18 Days Until Oklahoma Sooners Football

Jermaine Gresham, Aaron Weathers


Mel Kiper giving OU’s Jermaine Gresham some LOVE

However, one of the brightest young tight end stars has been 19-year-old Oklahoma sophomore Jermaine Gresham. After catching eight passes as a true freshman last season, Gresham (6-5, 265) has 30 receptions for a 13.5-yard average and 10 touchdowns this season. Other than one dropped pass against Iowa State, he has been consistent and reliable catching the ball, while also making steady progress as a blocker. Uniquely talented for the position, Gresham appears to have 40-yard dash speed in the 4.55-4.60 range, and he provides a pass-catching option that’s ideal for the way tight ends are being used in the NFL.Link¬†

Some highlights from Gresham’s highschool team, he’s #2

Gresham’s raw talent impresses

Someone went around the room after a recent Oklahoma football practice and asked about freshman tight end Jermaine Gresham.Sooner strong safety Keenan Clayton took a deep breath and simply said, “Man.”

Free safety Darien Williams mustered two words — “that dude” — before shaking his head and going quiet for a bit.

Middle linebacker Zach Latimer smiled and just started laughing.

Sometimes it isn’t what they say, but what they don’t. Gresham, a 6-7 250-pounder with sub-4.5 speed and a violent streak, has left those who have tried tackling him the past three weeks nearly speechless.


Which freshman will play? which will redshirt?

Freshmen on the field: Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops identified four true freshmen he expects to play this season and three others who fall into the “possibly” category.

After Wednesday’s practice, Stoops said tight end Jermaine Gresham will “for sure” be on the field, along with receivers Adron Tennell and Brandon Caleb, and offensive lineman Chase Beeler.

Offensive lineman Trent Williams could possibly be a contributor this season, along with running back Mossis Madu and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.

The depth ahead of him at his position could be what leads to McCoy being redshirted.

“Gerald McCoy has played well,” Venables said. “He’s had an outstanding fall camp. But we have some experience there.”


ESPN’s OU spring review

Oklahoma Sooners 2006 Schedule
9/2 UAB
9/9 Washington
9/16 at Oregon
9/23 Middle Tennessee
10/7 at Texas
10/14 Iowa State
10/21 Colorado
10/28 at Missouri
11/4 at Texas A&M
11/11 Texas A&M
11/18 at Baylor
11/25 at Oklahoma State

2005 overall record:
Conference record:

Returning starters
Offense: 5, Defense: 8, Kicker/punter: 2

2005 statistical leaders (* returners)
Rushing: Adrian Peterson* (1,104 yds)
Passing: Rhett Bomar* (2,018 yds)
Receiving: Malcolm Kelly* (471 yds)
Tackles: Rufus Alexander* (102)
Sacks: Calvin Thibodeaux* (10)
Interceptions: Clint Ingram (5)

Spring Answers: So it turns out this Adrian Peterson is a pretty good little back. You might have heard of him. The kid from the Lone Star State who piles up yards by the hash mark when healthy. Well, Big 12 fans, here's a scary thought: That Peterson guy is once again at 100 percent — and looking better than ever. He's lighter on his feet and was even more evasive than usual this spring. Avoid injury and he can go ahead and book a trip to the Big Apple. … Based on proven talent, one could make a strong case the Sooners' defensive ends are the best in the country. In fact, let's just go ahead and say it. Larry Birdine and John Williams were in line for huge seasons in 2005 before devastating injuries hit. Their absence only cleared the way for C.J. Ah You, who was named Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year, and Calvin Thibodeaux, who led OU with 10 sacks. Now all four are in the rotation, along with Alonzo Dotson, who sat out last year due to academics. … The emergence of rising sophomore Reggie Smith had to be the story of the spring for the Sooners. A converted safety, Smith already looks like a shutdown corner opposite D.J. Wolfe. At least one source inside the program is already predicting a Thorpe Award awaits Smith later in his career. Keep an eye, too, on converted WR Lendy Holmes, who looks like a solid nickel back.

Fall Questions: With the rash of injuries that took over the O-line last fall, several young linemen gained some valuable experience. Still, it's never easy losing three starters up front, along with an underappreciated fullback (J.D. Runnels) who could block the Red River. A couple of the potential starters on the line weren't able to participate in the spring, so it was tough to gauge (seven players took all of the snaps). The talent is there. At what point does the unit gel, though? … Instead of a fullback, might the Sooners consistently utilize a two-tight end set? We'll see. Between Joe Jon Finley, converted end Auston English and 6-7 uberprospect Jermaine Gresham, the options are aplenty. … Can Rhett Bomar crank it up a notch in the leadership department? It's hard to demand of a second-year player, but it's a must if OU wants to get back into national title contention, which it clearly has a chance to do. Peterson isn't really a vocal guy and there's only one senior starter on offense. Some have argued Bomar gets a little too emotional at times, but he's smart enough to find a happy medium (and maybe improve that 1-1 TD-INT ratio while he's at it). … Late in the spring, Bob Stoops threw starting punter Cody Freeby off the team for various off-field reasons. What does this mean? It's anyone's guess. Junior Mike Knall is in the mix, but Stoops hasn't ruled out seeking some help this summer. So if you're a soccer player with a good leg in the greater Norman area, you might consider giving Bob a call.