February 1, 2011

Re-Ranking The Sooner Seniors



When most of 2010's seniors arrived in Norman there was a return of optimism after rebounding in the 2006 season from a substandard year in 2005. But four seasons, 43 wins, three Big 12 titles, and the first BCS win in almost a decade later and it's clear Oklahoma's senior class of 2010 was among the most successful in school history. Because of the immense success that this group of players had over their careers, we thought it would be interesting to revisit their individual rankings coming out of high school or junior college and re-rank them based on what they did during their time at Lindsey and Jenkins. Here is our take on how the rankings would look with the benefit of hindsight.



NOTE: Any player that finished out his collegiate career will be given
at least two stars, for that in and of itself is a significant accomplishment
that not every player achieves. Also included are any early entrants into the NFL draft.





















Re-ranking Oklahoma's 2010 Senior Class

Jeremy Beal
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Defensive End

Hometown: Carrollton, Texas

Height/Weight: 6-3 / 267

Profiles:

High School
|

College

KEY STATISTICS: The talented pass rusher will go down as one of the all-time sack leaders in school history along with being a three-year starter and arguably the most decorated defensive end in the Bob Stoops era. Beal's ability as a jack of all-trades made him yet another great success in the 'spinner' role Oklahoma has made so noteworthy.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING:This one was really close to going up to five-stars but the way that he struggled, at times, this year in the absence of Gerald McCoy made that pretty hard to justify. That being said Beal had a tremendous career and figures to be remembered as a player that got as much out of his natural talent as any in recent memory.

Cory Brandon
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Offensive Tackle

Hometown: Corsicana, Texas

Height/Weight: 6-7 / 324

Profiles:
High
School
|

College
KEY STATISTICS: You don't ever want to be overly hard on a guy but with zero career starts it's hard to find any other statistic that matters much.




REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: It's been much debated whether Brandon's troubles with gaining weight were due to his lack of work or just something he couldn't do much about, either way Brandon never remotely approached his potential.

Brandon Caleb
- 2006



High School Ranking:


College Re-Ranking:



Position: Wide Receiver

Hometown: Richmond, Ga.

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 193

Profiles:
High School |

College

KEY STATISTICS: Early in his junior campgaign it looked as though Caleb might be starting to trun a corner to try and become a real impact player for the Sooners. However that just never really came about and his 21-catches from the BYU game to Baylor on Oct. 10 made up over half of his career total.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Caleb was a consumate team guy and never seemed disgruntled about being passed by younger players but at the end of the day 34-career catches is not what many had hoped for him upon his arrival.

Quinton Carter
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Safety

Hometown: Las Vegas, Nev.

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 200

Profiles:

High School
|

College
KEY STATISTICS: It's a blend of his tackles as well as his four interceptions in each of junior and senior years. His 184-tackles in the same two years made him one of the team leaders and allowed him to earn All-American honors as a Senior.




REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Carter is a player that was steady and almost always reliable but in spite of his All-American nomination as a senior for most his marquee moment came in the 2008 Big 12 championship game when he stepped into the starting line-up and played quite well.

Brandon Crow
- 2006



High School Ranking:


College Re-Ranking:




Position: Linebacker/Fullback

Hometown: Comanche, Okla.

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 242

Profiles:
High School |

College

KEY STATISTICS: Two. Crow was yet another example of this reason this team seemed to have such camaraderie in spite of playing some early on in 2008 at linebacker he took his move to fullback in stride and didn't cause a stir when passed over by younger players at his second position. His two positions and zero complaints are the embodiment of the little things that help a team.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Though Crow's team-first attitude is incredibly commendable, these rankings are about on-field production and Crow had little opportunity to make an impact on the field.

Tavaris Jeffries
- 2009



Junior College Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Offensive Line

Hometown: Memphis, Tenn.

Height/Weight: 6-4 / 309

Profiles:

Junior College
|

College
KEY STATISTICS: His three starts early in his junior season seemed to indicate that he was going to make a move but Jeffries played in six games and then quickly went forgotten. Jeffries never made much of an impact after that early playing time.




REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Jeffries at times showed promise but never really seemed to build on things and many felt that he was unwilling to get his head right about the commitment needed to live up to his potential. In the end Jeffries was moved to defensive tackle but failed to make any impact at all there.

Cameron Kenney
- 2009



Junior College Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Wide Receiver

Hometown: Dacula, Ga.

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 193

Profiles:

Junior College
|

College

KEY STATISTICS: The final three games comprise all of Kenney's most memorable moments and in each and every game he came through with flying colors. In his final three games he totalled 20 catches for 360-yards and three touchdowns the totals are huge but to show you out o fthe blue it was, it makes up almost half of his career totals.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Sure his impact didn't match up with the longevity of some others but the big plays that Kenney made through the final three games of the season are more than many players make in an entire career. With his late season play Kenney most likely bought himself a free agent contract to try and latch on somewhere.

Pryce Macon
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Defensive Lineman

Hometown: Corpus Christi, Texas

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 249

Profiles:

High School
|

College
KEY STATISTICS: There is really no other place to start and end than with his performance in the 2010 Big 12 championship game in which he took home the top spot in that week's Hot 11. His five tackles for loss marked only the ninth time in school history the total had been reached.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: It may have been a bit fortunate for Macon to get a third star but his performance in the Sooners big comeback against Nebraska was a performance for the ages that has the Sooners standing as the Big 12's final champion, at least in it's former standing.

Mossis Madu
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Running Back

Hometown: Norman, Okla.

Height/Weight: 6-0 / 197

Profiles:

High School
|

College

KEY STATISTICS: His 114-yards against Missouri in the Big 12 championship was his first, and only, performance but there is no arguing such an effort on such a massive stage. It would seem that Madu simply would like to have faced the Tigers each game in his career as arguably his next pinnacle moment was a 77-yard return against Missouri as a senior.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Madu failed to really find any consistent playing time behind his 2006 classmates, Demarco Murray and Chris Brown. That being said, when given the opportunities Madu generally made the most of it.

Eric Mensik
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Offensive Tackle

Hometown: Rosenberg, Texas

Height/Weight: 6-6 / 288

Profiles:

High School
|

College
KEY STATISTICS: The more you look over this class the more you can see why Oklahoma seemed to deal with adversity like a senior led team. Mensik was a career back-up prior to a plague of offensive line injuries last year. After a stellar performance, all things considered, in last year's Bedlam Mensik was moved permanently and made several All Big 12 teams this year.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: If Mensik would have spent more time at tackle it's entirely possible that he might have picked up a fourth star but as is he managed to make more of his career than most would have thought possible in Early November of 2009.

Demarco Murray
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Running Back

Hometown: Las Vegas, Nev.

Height/Weight: 6-1 / 207

Profiles:

High School
|

College

KEY STATISTICS: Murray's career is a key statistic, the guy just put up number upon number as one of the most under appreciated backs in the last few years of college football. Of course anyone talking about his stats would be remiss to not mention his 64 career touchdowns along with his 6,498 total yards, both school records.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: I admit as I was typing the key statistics I had Murray re-ranked as a four-star and then changed it to five-stars after typing out those gaudy numbers. I changed it three more times and I'll probably go back and forth on this one for a much longer than this article will be remembered.

Jonathan Nelson
- 2006



High School Ranking:



College Re-Ranking:




Position: Defensive Back

Hometown: Mansfield, Texas

Height/Weight: 5-11 / 188

Profiles:
High School |
College
KEY STATISTICS: Nelson had two strong seasons at safety but bounced around a bit before that. Almost undoubtedly the moment of his career was an interception against Oklahoma State that helped seal the a surprising Sooner win in 2009 Bedlam.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: Nelson was always a consistent player but never what you might call a consistent playmaker for the Sooners. However that's not to say he wasn't a valuable part of the Sooner defense the last two years.

Adrian Taylor
- 2006



High School Ranking:


College Re-Ranking:




Position: Defensive Tackle

Hometown: Mansfield, Texas

Height/Weight: 6-4 / 295

Profiles:

High School
|

College

KEY STATISTICS: Forget all the numbers, it's just about watching what Taylor did for this team. The big defensive tackle was well on his way to an NFL career before a blood-curdling injury in last year's Sun Bowl. He fought his way back and was making a positive impact before tearing his achilles tendon this year.



REASON BEHIND THE RANKING: I've become repetitive in this article but again just look at what the young man went through to continue play for the Sooners. Don't care about stats or number, the guy should go down as one of the all-time Sooners.






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