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Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Sooners' defensive depth will be tested by Granger's injury

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

Oklahoma's defensive depth will be tested with the loss of defensive tackle DeMarcus Granger, although the Sooners likely have players who can fill in for the injured player.

Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops told reporters on Wednesday that team doctors haven't decided what will be the next step of Granger's rehabilitation from the injury, which Stoops told the Oklahoman newspaper is a detached tendon in his foot.

Doctors could opt for extended rest or surgery. Rest would mean he would likely miss three or four games. Surgery would end his season.

Granger's injury occurred when he was manhandled by three Washington players late in the second quarter of the Sooners' 55-14 victory last week. Television replays showed that one of the players punched Granger while he was pinned on his back.

On the previous play, Granger had shoved Washington G Casey Bulyca to the turf after a false start penalty on the Huskies. Granger was flagged 15 yards for a personal foul on the play, starting a shoving match between the two teams.

The 6-foot-2, 302-pound Granger was a heralded recruit who made 11 starts for the Sooners last season. He came on late in the season with big games against Oklahoma State and Missouri in the Big 12 championship, earning All-Big 12 second team honors by the coaches and honorable mention by the Associated Press.

But he landed firmly in Stoops' doghouse when he was arrested for shoplifting before the Fiesta Bowl and sent home by bus.

Granger was slowed with preseason back and conditioning programs but had worked his way back into Oklahoma's regular rotation. But he had lost his starting position to sophomore Adrian Taylor in the first three games of the season. Granger had notched six tackles, 1.5 tackles for losses and a fumble recovery so far this season.

Gerald McCoy and Taylor will remain as the starters at the position with senior Cory Bennett providing depth at both positions. Junior Cordero Moore replaced Granger in the rotation against Washington. And if Granger is out for the rest of the season, the Sooners might consider bringing freshmen Casey Walker or Stacy McGee out of their redshirts for the rest of the season.