OU football journal: R.J. Proctor the only surprise starter vs. Houston
Left tackle R.J. Proctor was the only surprise starter for the Sooners, and not even Proctor was a shock. Proctor, listed as the backup left guard on the depth chart released a few days ago, started at left tackle in place of Erik Swenson, who was injured earlier in training camp. Swenson joined the lineup late second quarter, in place of Proctor.
Among the undetermined starters on the depth chart, Trey Sermon started ahead of Kennedy Brooks at tailback, Jeremiah Hall started ahead of Brayden Willis at fullback, Grant Calcaterra started ahead of Lee Morris at tight end, Charleston Rambo started ahead of Jadon Haselwood and Trejan Bridges at wide receiver, LaRon Stokes started ahead of Jalen Redmond at defensive tackle, DeShaun White started ahead of Ryan Jones at weakside linebacker, Jon-Michael Terry started ahead of Nik Bonitto at rush end and Brendan Radley-Hiles started ahead of Chanse Sylvie at nickelback.
Sunday goes smooth
From all indications, the first Sunday home game in OU history went smooth. Traffic was not terrible, as fans appeared to migrate into Norman throughout the day. Security lines into the stadium seemed shorter than usual. And the announced crowd of 84,534 (a sellout) contained fewer empty seats than typical, in part because Houston used all of its ticket allotment.
OU associate athletic director Kenny Mossman said there remains some fans opposed to the Sooners playing on a Sunday, but the game operations went smoothly, with no discernible difference from a Saturday game. Mossman said the day-long block party Saturday at Campus Corner was “very well-received, very nice crowd.”
Dixon appears on video board
Rickey Dixon, OU’s 1987 Thorpe Award winner, chose not to attend the halftime celebration of his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. Dixon, who suffers from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is confined to a wheelchair and chose to watch the game from Barry Switzer’s home just west of campus.
But Dixon received a standing ovation after a video tribute was played on the scoreboard and National Football Foundation director Steve Hatchell presented Dixon’s family with a framed proclamation of Dixon’s enshrinement. Joining Dixon’s family on the field were OU dignitaries and former Sooner greats, including Switzer, Clendon Thomas, Greg Pruitt and two Dixon teammates who also made All-American – Tony Casillas and Keith Jackson.
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Then the video screen showed Dixon, smiling in Switzer’s home.
OU sophomore Charleston Rambo went into the Orange Bowl with only five catches in his first Sooner season. Then against Alabama, Rambo had three catches for 74 yards, including a 49-yard touchdown catch. All with Jalen Hurts watching in an Bama uniform.
Now Hurts is the OU quarterback, and Rambo kept up his hot hands, with three receptions for 105 yards, including a 56-yard catch-and-run off a Hurts pass.
They said it
Former OU quarterback Justice Hansen tweeted during Jalen Hurts’ monster game against Houston: “When I left OU, people would ask me who I thought was going to be OU’s starting quarterback. My answer? It doesn’t matter. Coach Riley is too good of an offensive mind. The system is fool proof. 4 years and 3 QBs later, I think I’m correct.”