Breakout Sooners for 2022

bcsoonerfan

Sooner starter
Aug 7, 2007
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Pretty obvious question, who do think are a couple Sooners ready to step up this season?

I've been preaching Reggie Grimes for over a year and he was my guy for 2021 but "Speed D" apparently only applied to how quickly we rotated out starters. I believe Reggie is the most talented defensive player on the roster and will thrive in Venables scheme.

Key Lawrence is another guy I think that's ready to make a name for himself and now at safety he'll terrorize and intimidate receivers coming over the middle. I assume we'll see some targeting calls with his physical play but it'll be worth it. He proved to be very versatile and allowing him to play against the run as well will help on the whole.

Offensively I think Theo Wease will surprise with his return from injury. After being 'okay' for 2 seasons, and Mims as the big play guy, look for Wease to shine on the outside being heavily targeted and a guy who moves the chains and makes big catches in crucial situations.

And lastly for me, Dillon Gabriel. I had reservations but after seeing his collective poise and decision making, as well as his arm throwing into a nasty wind during the spring game, I'm comfortable expecting a big season behind the starting 5 lineman and all the offensive playmakers he'll have at his disposal.
 

Belldozer1

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Aug 20, 2014
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I hope it’s one of our receivers. As much as I like Mims, he seems to disappear in games if he’s the only legitimate threat. Really need Wease, Farooq and Gibson to step up.
 
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CTOkie

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Sep 20, 2001
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Portland Ct.
Place kicker Zach Schmit needs to be another solid OU kicker. So far, it seems he will be a good one.
The secondary needs at least three players to make their positions stronger than a year ago.
The three new tight ends, Parker, Helms and Llewellyn, are very talented and I can see them being immediate contributors.
Freshman Nick Evers.....when considering OU's quarterbacking situation after this year...needs to play well to allow OU to have a seamless transition if or when Gabriel goes to the NFL. That said, a return of Gabriel in 2023 would be huge as it would also allow Austin Jackson more time to develop.
There are at least 7 offensive linemen, all 4-star recruits, who must step up to deepen the depth in the OL. These are Byrd, Simpson, Parks, Walker, Anderson, Hicks and Alexander. There are good players among the transfers and including Raym and Harrison, but more good talent needs to be added.
 
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coeSooner81

Sooner signee
Oct 10, 2014
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I hope it’s one of our receivers. As much as I like Mims, he seems to disappear in games if he’s the only legitimate threat. Really need Wease, Farooq and Gibson to step up.
I think that was by design last year. Riley had Mims running the deep routes, taking him out of the game. He started the season red hot and Riely knew he was a weapon and so he took him out of as many plays as he could. Of course, this is just a conspiracy theory of mine.
 

tansoonerfan

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Oct 29, 2002
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I think that was by design last year. Riley had Mims running the deep routes, taking him out of the game. He started the season red hot and Riely knew he was a weapon and so he took him out of as many plays as he could. Of course, this is just a conspiracy theory of mine.
Well, I can see your point but the logistics are all wrong. His goal was to send the receivers on long routes that ended up in southern CA.
 

Plainosooner

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Oct 20, 2002
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Plano, TX
We need two defensive tackles to become unblockable. Redmond would be nice. Best shot at it. But we need another one. We need defensive guys that you must double team. And they still make some plays. Maybe Johnson or Stripling is a candidate for that.

We need a tight end or two to be threats. And somebody at wide has to be a difference maker. I don't know who it might be. Mims was against Texas. He's a good guy. But I haven't seen him be great more than a couple of times. I think the way they want to run the offense, they're going to need an RB to make a difference. I think the best chance for that is Jovantae. We'll see. I don't trust the offensive skill depth on the team. As attrition inevitably happens, some guys who don't look right now to be somebody to count on, are going to have to be. I'm worried about wide, and RB, and just the whole offensive skill group. If our best receiver is Drake, it will be a long season, though I like him on 3rd and 7.