By John Shinn
Voluntary workouts have come under tremendous scrutiny in the last few days throughout college football. Several current and former Michigan players told the Detroit Free Press that voluntary workouts over the summer were in fact mandatory at the school.
Offseason workouts went well beyond the NCAA mandated times of no more than eight hours a week. Michigan players also said their in-season activities frequently exceeded the mandated 20 hours a week.
Coach Bob Stoops said OU has checks and balances to make sure its practices and offseason workouts are within the rules.
"We submit what we do to our compliance department and our compliance people are around quite often to check the times we submit and to see the times we're on the field," he said. "They're around often and we welcome them. In the end, you have to stick to a timeline that you have to work with in."
The voluntary workout issue is one that has been questioned over the last decade. Coaches can't make players stay in Norman over the summer to workout out with teammates. And coaches are not allowed to watch those workouts due to NCAA rules.
Some say those who don't are penalized.
"I wouldn't say a player is penalized," Stoops said. "I would say, in the end they, realize they're not going to be capable of playing if they're not here all summer. Someone is going to be in there because they have been here all summer.
"What I've found is guys that haven't had great summers end up injured in the first week or two. Their muscles, their legs, they're not able to handle being out there in two-a-days and the stress of competing and playing, and someone else has passed them by."