Landry Jones may have fewer weapons at his disposal as Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops has stripped two wide receivers, Jaz Reynolds and Trey Franks, of their scholarships, according to reports. A third wide receiver, Kameel Jackson, must earn back his scholarship following the summer semester. Defensive back Quentin Hayes has had his scholarship pulled, too.
All three are no longer attending the University of Oklahoma after what’s being described as “violations of team rules.” Apparently, Bob Stoops isn’t playing around as he clearly stated to the press in attendance at the OU Caravan event in Tulsa last night that he is moving on with plans that don’t include them.
It’s a bit of a fresh air approach to a generation that has seen coaches excuse bad player behavior in increasing numbers in the pursuit of the almighty win.
The biggest name gone is unquestionably Jaz Reynolds, who was a returning starter from a year ago. Reynolds contributed 715 yards on 41 catches in 2011, but he also missed 3 games. Franks was to be a junior backup who caught 22 passes last season and had 53 receptions for his career in Norman.
This does leave the Sooners wide receiver corps a bit depleted as you would expect. However, this is Oklahoma we are talking about, and all it does is throw opportunities the way of younger and more unproven players. It puts more pressure on incoming freshman Trey Metoyer, who was projected as a potential starter even before the announcement.
Should Kameel Jackson earn back his scholarship after the summer semester, it will help ease the pain a bit, as he did contribute 12 catches for 165 yards in 2011, but his return is far from a given.
As for the loss of Hayes, he was expected to be a backup option in the secondary and not much of a factor unless injuries hit the Sooners.
One thing’s for sure, we’ll know pretty early on if Jones has chemistry with the depleted unit of receivers in his quest for the Heisman Trophy and more in 2012. Thankfully, an easy early schedule that features two very winnable non-conference games and two bye weeks sandwiched around Kansas State should help Jones and the receivers ease into the swing of things.
Overall, these losses could become just minimal offseason distractions and serve as a stern message to the rest of the Sooners – shape up or ship out.