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OU football: Lincoln Riley confirms running back Kennedy Brooks will return to Sooners for 2021 season

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Kennedy Brooks

Redshirt sophomore running back Kennedy Brooks during the Sooners' game against Baylor in the Big 12 Championship game in Arlington, Texas, Dec. 7.

Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley confirmed in a press conference Friday that running back Kennedy Brooks will return to the Sooners for the 2021 season.

Brooks opted out of the 2020 season in August, which allowed more playing time for running backs T.J. Pledger and Marcus Major before Rhamondre Stevenson returned from a suspension halfway through the season. Pledger entered the NCAA Transfer Portal after OU's Big 12 Championship win over Iowa State on Dec. 19, and Stevenson still has yet to decide whether or not to return for next season.

Running backs Stevenson, Major and Seth McGowan all ran for career highs in the Sooners' 55-20 Cotton Bowl win over Florida, rushing for 186, 110 and 73 yards, respectively. Riley addressed the running backs room for 2021, saying Wednesday night was a good sign of a bright future for the position group. 

"There's a lot that can happen between now and then," Riley said Friday. "We're excited about the way those three guys played the other night, and it's certainly a real positive there. It'll be exciting to get (Brooks) back involved."

Brooks has rushed for over a 1,000 yards twice with the Sooners — 1,056 yards in 2018 and 1,011 in 2019. He's tallied 18 touchdowns in that timespan as well.

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Caleb McCourry is the assistant sports editor at The Daily and is a junior at OU majoring in English. He's covered football, basketball and volleyball. 

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