The Norman Transcript


April 13, 2008

D-Backs rule Red/White Game

The Red/White Game usually serves as the end of Oklahoma’s spring practices or drills and everything turns toward the upcoming season. At times, it’s also been a coming out party for players who are ready to seize the spotlight.

Several did Saturday at Owen Field.

Most were in the secondary.

Cornerback Dominique Franks intercepted three passes and returned the first 57 yards for a touchdown to highlight a big day by OU’s defensive backs.

“I think I had a pretty good day today,” said Franks, who will be a sophomore next season.

He didn’t need to be asked to give that indication. The secondary entered spring practice with the most holes needing to be filled. Three of the four starters from last year’s unit, cornerbacks Reggie Smith and Marcus Walker, and strong safety D.J. Wolfe, needed to be replaced. A fourth, safety Nic Harris, missed spring drills due to a shoulder injury.

Yet the incoming group appeared to prove Saturday it’s ready to take the reins.

Cornerback Brian Jackson and safety Sam Proctor also broke up a pair of passes and the offense’s lack of big plays.

“I thought their positioning was great. I thought the corners were excellent,” OU coach Bob Stoops said. “Guys like Sam Proctor had big days that really showed. They were in position all day and that’s pleasing to see as a coach.”

As was the case with the previous two scrimmages this spring, defense dominated.

Quarterback Sam Bradford completed 12-of-25 passes for 191 yards.

He hit Jermaine Gresham for a 51-yard touchdown pass late in the first half.

However, Bradford was picked off three times with two going for touchdowns. Franks’ touchdown return came on the first series and defensive end Frank Alexander dropped into coverage to pick one off and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown.

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