Coaches get first look at Sooners this week
The OU football coaches and players have gotten to know each other during winter workouts, but they will get their first glimpse of the new team when spring football begins today.
Practices start at 4 p.m. and will run today, Wednesday and Thursday this week. These first practices will be closed to the public, however practices will be open next week. The Sooner squad will practice at 4 p.m. April 5, 7 and 8, and will scrimmage at 9 a.m. April 10.
OU head coach Bob Stoops said the players and coaches are adjusting well to each other. But the athletes will have to adjust to more than just the new coaches. The Sooners will also learn new gameplans on offense and defense.
Defensive coordinator Mike Stoops will teach his players the defense the Stoops family has made work for years.
"We may line up similar, but the way we teach things is going to be different," he said. "The spring is going to take a little bit of time for them to get comfortable in our system. It's not a complicated system, but it's still totally different than what they did last year or the year before."
The offensive players will also spend much of spring practice adjusting to their new system.
OU has historically been a rushing team and has emphasized the ground attack for the last few years, but the new head coach said he wants the running game to share the spotlight with a passing game.
"We expect to show a balanced attack that is equally effective in throwing and in running," Bob Stoops said. "Hopefully it will be an attack that takes advantage of what the defense allows you. That's the ability to run and to throw. Hopefully when we throw it, we'll throw it efficiently."
Bob Stoops said his experience trying to stop offenses has given him a unique perspective on the offensive side of the ball.
"As a defensive coordinator, I know that from competing against an offense, the more difficult ones to stop are the ones that can do both (running and passing)," he said. "They keep you balanced on defense as opposed to loading up on one or the other. It forces a defense to be balanced and focus on what they do."
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