Everyone's heard the claim that Oklahoma is on the decline, that their program is headed back toward mediocrity. According to many, there's no reason to even play the season—just send the trophy to Austin and call it a year.
First, someone will have to point out when the Oklahoma program was ever mediocre. Sure, they had their challenges during the '90s, but what they've done their entire history eliminates the word mediocre from the Sooner vocabulary.
Now, if everyone outside of Norman wants to fall victim to this line of thinking it's at their own peril. According to many sources out of Norman, there are some young kids that will not only impact this upcoming season, but the seasons to come. Bob Stoops has raved at his most recent recruiting class, calling them maybe his best ever.
He's not just talking about a handful of kids either. He's referring to the entire class of 29 players. The work ethic and the comments from a lot of the older players were nice to hear. Now he's seeing that on the field and he grows more excited everyday.
There was talk a few weeks ago about how they wanted to get Demarco Murray 2,000 yards this season. Only now, they are realizing that may not be possible—not because Murray couldn't pull it off, but because he's going to be sharing the rock. A lot.
Bob Stoops will not be able to keep Roy Finch off the field. The kid is just too dynamic and multi-dimensional—just like Murray actually.
Is the Oklahoma program on the decline?
Then there's Brennan Clay, another back in the same mold. Look for these two to be big time over the next few years. There are a few other kids that will make immediate impacts this fall as well.
Most Sooner fans are already familiar with Kenny Stills from his spring game performance. The one who out-shone all Sooner receivers outside of Broyles. He will be Landry Jones' much needed second option this year.
Listening to Brent Venables this week it sounds as if Tony Jefferson will be on the field a lot as well. Many consider him to be in the mold of Roy Williams, and Sooner fans can only hope. Jefferson, along with Aaron Colvin may get early playing time this year, and will most certainly be key in the future Sooner defense.
Oklahoma had a very solid recruiting class in '09. Their '10 class was even better, and much larger. The '11 class is already a top five class and getting better. Going by those numbers and the optimism on this year's youngsters, to say Oklahoma is on the decline may be a bit premature. If Oklahoma goes into Dallas and beats Texas this year, they will regain the mental edge in that series for the next few years because these youngsters just won't know any better.
Can the season get here quick enough?!
Boomer Sooner Baby!!