The Norman Transcript

OU Sports

March 10, 2013

Speed adds new element to spring QB competition

NORMAN — The derby to become Oklahoma’s next starting quarterback officially started Saturday with the Sooners’ first practice of the spring. The workout was junior Blake Bell’s, sophomore Kendal Thompson’s and redshirt freshman Trevor Knight’s initial opportunity to prove which is the successor to Landry Jones.

However, the one thing made clear by Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops and offensive coordinator Josh Heupel is that winning the job is going to be a tedious process.

“We’re gonna name a guy when he’s earned it. That’s what we’ve always done here,” Heupel said this week. “That position is extremely important, I think, for that guy to go out and earn that position, earn the confidence of the guys around him. Earn the trust of the people around him so he can ultimately lead that group, that offense, in the way that we want him to.”

Trust will be what ultimately decides who takes the reins of the Sooners’ offense. The race between Bell, Thompson and Knight is distinct among past offseason competitions for quarterbacks in that this one will come as the offense is being retooled to take advantage of the group’s running ability.

All three have the ability to pick up first downs with their feet in ways Jones never could have imagined. Bell, who is the front-runner to get the job, has already proven it over the last two seasons. He’s already rushed for 24 touchdowns, using his 6-foot-6, 263-pound frame.

Neither Thompson or Knight have played an official game, but have displayed elusive running ability going all the way back to high school.

In one form or another this is crucial the Sooners’ offense.

“To a degree it will be,” OU coach Bob Stoops said. “We’ll do our best not to give away exactly how we want to do it but in the end, there will be a little bit of that, for sure.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
OU Sports
  • OU’s Hornbeak to transfer

    In a surprising decision, sophomore guard Je’lon Hornbeak informed Oklahoma’s coaching staff on Tuesday he will transfer at the end of the spring semester....

    April 16, 2014

  • BedlamBaseball2 Sooners prevail in 18-inning Bedlam showdown

    STILLWATER — Oklahoma hoped a little more pop in the lineup would serve as an energy injection....

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Red White Transfer QB Baker Mayfield shows promise in Red-White Game

    Individual awards were not handed out after Saturday’s Red-White Game. If they had, quarterback Baker Mayfield wouldn’t have left Owen Field empty handed. He only played against defensive backups, but going 9 for 9 for 125 yards and two ...

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • OU skipper looking for more firepower in the lineup

    What Oklahoma coach Pete Hughes did following the two-hour rain delay against Texas was telling. It didn’t pay off in the Sooners’ 8-1 loss that secured a series sweep for the Longhorns. But it declared where the Sooners are and that some ...

    April 15, 2014

  • OU v Texas Longhorns dominate mistake-plagued Sooners to take command of Big 12

    It took over 41⁄2 hours for Oklahoma and Texas to reach a conclusion that seemed inevitable on Sunday at L. Dale Mitchell Park....

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Red-White Game more of a treat for the fans

    Oklahoma didn’t play a game as much as it put on a show Saturday at Owen Field. At least, that was the intent....

    April 14, 2014

  • Lady Bears snap Sooners’ win streak

    The winning streak is over, but the Sooners are leaving Waco with what they came for....

    April 14, 2014

  • Longhorns hand Sooners second straight loss in series

    A day after dropping a drama-filled, extra-innings contest to Texas on Friday, Oklahoma played like it took the loss as hard as could be expected from the series opener of a bitter rivalry....

    April 13, 2014

  • Red White Defense rules the day at spring game

    Fans want to see offense in spring games, and there were a lot of devotees at Oklahoma’s Red-White Game on Saturday. If 43,500 in attendance were hoping for a big day from quarterback Trevor Knight, they walked out of Owen Field ...

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sooner faithful best barometer for progress

    The headline, already up at Oklahoma’s athletic website by 6 p.m. Saturday, read “White Team Prevails in Annual Spring Game,” and if there’s a more meaningless summary of Sooner fortunes, in any sport, before next year’s spring game, I ...

    April 13, 2014