NORMAN — Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said running back Damien Williams and left tackle Lane Johnson both returned to practice on Wednesday, but he isn’t sure whether either will play on Saturday against Iowa State.
“They both worked today. Lane did more than Damien,” Stoops said. “We’re still unsure just yet.”
Both suffered ankle injuries during last Saturday’s game against Notre Dame.
Dating back to last season, Johnson has started 19 of the last 20 games at left or right tackle. If he cannot play, sophomore Tyrus Thompson will get the start.
If Williams, who is OU’s leading rusher with 581 yards and seven touchdowns, is held out against Iowa State, Stoops said Dominique Whaley will get the start.
Whaley has not played in the last two games, but is averaging 6.3 yards per carry.
Stoops said he expects to have a more definitive answer on Johnson’s and Williams’ status today.
Hayes reinstated: Sophomore defensive back Quentin Hayes has been reinstated to the team after serving an “indefinite suspension” for seven games.
Stoops confirmed Hayes’ status change after Wednesday’s practice. Hayes broke the news earlier in the day on Twitter.
However, it wasn’t a topic the OU coach wanted to discuss.
“He’s practiced like everyone else practiced today. He doesn’t deserve any talking about,” Stoops said of Hayes. “He hasn’t played yet.”
The suspensions for wide receiver Jaz Reynolds and defensive back Trey Franks continue.
Mystery voice: AT&T debuted a commercial on Saturday that included a cameo by Stoops.
“That was done on a Thursday on our second off-week at night from about 11-12,” Stoops said. “They asked me to do it. AT&T’s a big partner of ours. The primary reason is they do a lot for the university with our athletic department. They asked if I’d be a part of that and I only would have because it was the off-week and the timing of it worked.”
Center Gabe Ikard caught the commercial on Sunday and was left wondering one thing:
“Why did they dub his voice? That’s obviously not him. It’s horrible,” Ikard said. “It was just really funny that they would tape over one of the most well-known college football coaches in the country — and expect us not to notice.”
Stoops admitted when he saw the commercial that he didn’t think it sounded like him.
“It’s fair to say I don’t have a very good voice,” he said.
Cyclones depleted: OU is dealing with injury issues, but so is Iowa State. Linebacker Jake Knott, who leads the Big 12 Conference in tackles with 57, will miss the game due to a shoulder injury.
Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads said Knott could potentially return for a bowl game.