The Oklahoma Sooners' wrapped up its spring session on Tuesday after a month of practices that left no doubt about the hype surrounding the 2011 team.
There were some question marks at defensive tackle and in the secondary heading into the spring, but players stepping up into new roles and smart coaching decisions have paved the way for the defense to be a strength this season.
Gabe Lynn taking over for Jamell Fleming (who is currently not enrolled at cornerback) proved to be the right decision as well as moving cornerback Aaron Colvin to safety. Both players are extremely talented and will help the Sooners' secondary be a strong unit.
Veterans JaMarkus McFarland, Stacy McGee and Casey Walker all stepped up and performed at a high level throughout the spring and made a lot of Sooner fans breath easier with their performance at the spring game.
However, there is one more question that haunts Oklahoma.
Who will be lining up in the backfield at running back?
The race for the position is very much up for grabs between five players: Roy Finch, Brennan Clay, Jonathan Miller, Brandon Williams and Dominique Whaley.
All played in the spring game with Clay and Whaley standing out the most. Finch is the most recognizable of the group due to his great play in the 2010 season. Williams is a true freshman while Miller, a junior, has patiently bided his time, waiting for an opportunity to play on the country's biggest stage.
It's very clear at this point that there won't be one feature back in the Sooners' offense the season. For one, they are all extremely talented and none stand out more than the others in that category.
The biggest reason though is that there isn't a back that (at this point anyway) has the durability to carry the ball 30-40 times a game.
None of these backs are power backs, but rather a mix of strength and speed. Because of that, it is in the best interest of the offense that the Sooners not rely on one particular back, but several.
The advantage to this is that while all these backs are similar in style, they are unique enough to offer something different from each other. This will allow Oklahoma to mix things up in the running game and utilize different backs for different situations.
This question has been answered to a degree, but there is still no indicator as to how the rotation will work, how many backs will be involved and most importantly, who will be getting the majority of the carries.
Time will tell as the Sooners continue working through the summer, but no matter what happens, there is going to be a lot of talent at the running back position in 2011.