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OU football: Neville Gallimore says Oklahoma defense is transitioning smoothly under Alex Grinch

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Neville Gallimore (copy)

Redshirt senior defensive lineman Neville Gallimore speaks with a reporter at Big 12 Media Days July 15.

Redshirt senior defensive end Neville Gallimore said Monday at Big 12 Media Days that the transition to coach Alex Grinch’s system has been smooth.

Many were wondering how the defense would respond to the arrival of Oklahoma coach Alex Grinch in January. Grinch has been constantly reminding the Sooners' defense of their poor performance during the 2018-19 season, but Gallimore says it’s just what the team needs.

“I love it. I’m not really a fan of the people that are always gonna tell me how great of a job I’m doing,” Gallimore said. “You need someone who’s gonna give you constructive criticism, somebody who’s gonna tell you when it’s right and when it’s wrong, tell you when it’s wrong.”

Gallimore says that the new system Grinch has implemented hasn’t changed their training physically as much as it has mentally.

“Just adding that extra sauce, that mentality just to every down play like it’s your last, sell out,” Gallimore said. “It’s a defense that’ll make you or break you. It’s an effort-based defense. It shows when you’re flying around the ball.”

Gallimore was named an honorable mention to the All-Big 12 team during the 2018-19 season after recording 50 total tackles including 5.5 tackles for loss, three sacks and two forced fumbles. 

Easily missed in the crowds of media day, the redshirt senior stood alongside All-Big 12 teammates like junior wide reciever Ceedee Lamb, redshirt sophomore center Creed Humphrey and junior linebacker Kenneth Murray.

Gallimore has received some buzz the past week after being named No. 2 on Bruce Feldman's annual college football "freak". Despite this, the veteran defensive lineman knows he still has a lot to prove on the football field.

“I haven’t done anything yet. Those numbers are great but there’s 10 other athletes in this conference who could probably bench more than I do and aren't getting the recognition that I do," Gallimore said. "At the end of the day, it’s about football, and whatever I have to do to take that next step I’m gonna do it. Now it’s just about showing it on the field.” 

With just over a month remaining until the season begins, Gallimore and the rest of the Sooners defense seem excited for the chance to showcase Grinch's new defensive system.

The Oklahoma defense will face its first test on Sept. 1 against Houston.

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