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The Oklahoma Sooners are one of the top teams in college football. Looking at the composite power rankings, they are just behind the Alabama Crimson Tide for the top spot. If OU can find a way into the national championship game in 2021, it might be against the defending champions.
Spencer Rattler and company have plenty of work to do, but they have one of the easiest schedules in the Big 12, which could help their bid for a flawless run. They just need to avoid the early letdowns.
According to ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg (subscription required), the Oklahoma Sooners land at No. 4 overall in his future power rankings. This takes a look at the most overall talent over the next three years in college football. The Oklahoma Sooners are the highest-ranked Big 12 team and come in just behind the Alabama Crimson Tide, Clemson Tigers and Ohio State Buckeyes.
Other Big 12 Teams among the top 25:
Iowa State Cyclones (No. 15)
Texas Longhorns (No. 18)
Oklahoma State Cowboys (No. 22)
A look at the quarterbacks
Sooners’ Future Quarterback Ranking:
(Credit: OU Athletics)
OU checks in with the No. 1 quarterback ranking in the country according to Rittenberg. It has the Heisman Trophy favorite in Spencer Rattler. It also has the No. 1 quarterback from the 2021 recruiting class, Caleb Williams. He is expected to become the starter in 2022 provided Rattler heads to the NFL following the season. The team is also heavily targeting Malachi Nelson in the 2023 cycle.
What ESPN Says…
OU’s offense and quarterback play will project extremely well as long as coach Lincoln Riley is in town. Second-year starting quarterback Spencer Rattler enters 2021 as a top Heisman Trophy candidate. Rattler could play multiple years, and Caleb Williams, ESPN’s top-rated dual-threat quarterback in the 2021 class, figures to be next in line
Next, how the entire offensive ranks
Sooners’ Future Offensive Rating
Much like their quarterback rankings, the Sooners boast the No. 1 offensive ranking as well. Not much of a surprise as Lincoln Riley has done well with accumulating offensive talent. The Sooners have plenty of offensive firepower with more on the way. One of the best young talents seems to be freshman wide receiver, Mario Williams. He turned heads during spring camp and could emerge in 2021 much like Marvin Mims did a season ago. This is the must-watch unit in all of college football.
What ESPN Says…
The Sooners are deep at wide receiver (Marvin Mims, Theo Wease, Austin Stogner) and running back (Kennedy Brooks, Tennessee transfer Eric Gray). Offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh always has his group in good shape. The group returns emerging sophomore tackle Anton Harrison and adds tackle Wanya Morris, a transfer from Tennessee.
Don’t sleep on the OU defense
Sooners’ Future Defensive Rating
The Sooners have one of the better defensive units in college football. While they rank 19th, the team has CFP aspirations because it is well-rounded, not just an offensive team. The defense features two premier pass rushers, Nik Bonitto and Isaiah Thomas, and Perrion Winfrey in the middle of the defense. The Sooners are deep at linebacker and return both starters at safety in 2021. The secondary is young but talented. They are trending in the right direction to make some noise come postseason.
What ESPN Says…
Although Oklahoma’s streak of CFP appearances ended in 2020, the program moved closer to winning a national title. How? The Sooners’ defense began taking significant steps. The championship formula in the CFP era mandates top-level quarterback play and offensive production but also a defense that ranks top-15 or top-20 in most major categories. Oklahoma’s defense is getting closer and boasts plenty of potential playmakers in the front seven, such as linebackers Nik Bonitto and Brian Asamoah, and linemen Perrion Winfrey, Isaiah Thomas and Jalen Redmond. The Sooners’ improved recruiting and transfer portal additions also bolster the outlook on defense. Tennessee transfer Key Lawrence could immediately help a secondary led by an experienced safety tandem in Pat Fields and Delarrin Turner-Yell.