#SoonerNationDraft: How Teams Were Picked
If you were drafting a team from a pool of Sooners past and present, whom would you pick? Would you take the "Godfather of the Wishbone" and run the option with Jack Mildren? Or would you draft slinging Sam Bradford and air it out? To answer those questions and more, SoonerNation put together a panel of five OU football experts and conducted an all-time draft. Using the snake order draft format, each panelist picked 11 players on offense, 11 on defense and four specialists. Only those who played two full seasons at OU were eligible. In other words, Marcus Dupree, Troy Aikman and Joe Don Looney were not options. The first overall pick shouldn't surprise you. But others might.
No. 1: Joe Washington
No. 2: Mike Brooks
No. 3: Jim Ross
No. 4: Toby Rowland
No. 5: Jake Trotter
View the complete draft results at the bottom and check out each team on the right.
Roundtable: Experts Talk #SoonerNationDraft
1. What was your draft strategy going in?
Joe Washington: To have a great defensive front four and a super offensive line that would take the pressure off my skilled people on offense.
Mike Brooks: My strategy was to draft the best available player for the first few rounds, then evaluate my roster and choose the best offense and defense to fit my personnel. I decided the best fit was a pro set for my offense, and the "Oklahoma 50" for my defense.
Jim Ross: To get my QB [Sam Bradford] and then provide him with a dominating offensive line. My draft mirrored my take on the game -- it all starts with the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball.
Toby Rowland: I wanted to load up in the backfield and at linebacker. The most dynamic difference-makers in OU history have played QB, RB and LB. If my team was going to reflect that, I needed to be dominant at those positions.
Jake Trotter: In the first couple of rounds, I wanted to get an elite player at each level of my defense. By snagging Tony Casillas up front, Rod Shoate at linebacker and Roy Williams in the secondary, I accomplished that.
2. What are the strengths of your team?
Washington: I have a team that can really block and tackle.
Brooks: You can start with my running backs. I believe I drafted the greatest power-speed running back in A.D., as well as the greatest player of the Bud Wilkinson era in Billy Vessels. I also have two of the three best receivers in school history in Broyles and Hinton. Tight end Keith Jackson is arguably the greatest at his position maybe in NCAA history. Throw in a Heisman Trophy-winning QB in Jason White, and enough said.
Ross: The "Big BBQ Eaters," a.k.a. the O-line. And Sam. I've got big receivers for Sam and running backs who can catch the ball out of the backfield and run, too. I've also got heavy hitters on defense, from front to back.
Rowland: First down = Billy; second down = Little Joe; third down = Steve ... good luck to you. I also have a bone-rattling, punishing defense that can really fly. We will run the football and knock the snot out of you. That's Oklahoma football!
Trotter: I feel like I drafted a big-time defense. I grabbed, in my opinion, the second-best defensive tackle (Casillas), the two best safeties (Williams, Rickey Dixon) and the best linebacker (Shoate). Tackle Granville Liggins was also OU's best defender of the 1960s. Best of luck running the ball against that group.
3. Where could you have been better?
Washington: I don't know. I could have gone differently but I got what I needed in the interior lines.
Brooks: Offense and defense on the line. While I was drafting skill players, the other teams were picking up the stud linemen.
Ross: I wanted more speed at linebacker. However, the other drafters' offenses seem to be run-oriented, so perhaps we're OK.
Rowland: I waited to go after offensive linemen, so some big names got off the board before me. But I'm still very happy with my crew.
Trotter: I waited to draft offensive linemen, and was kind of scrambling there. Then again, all five guys I drafted up front were first-team All-Americans. So, I guess it worked out.
4. Who was the player you targeted who got away?
Washington: Steve Owens at fullback and a Greg Pruitt or a Tommy McDonald type of guy, who you could split out as a receiver, too.
Brooks: Tackle Ralph Neely and linebacker Carl McAdams. Joe picked Neely right before I was going to choose him, and J.R. did the same with McAdams. Neely would have been the star of my O-line, and without McAdams I chose to play a 5-2 defense instead of a 4-3. Neely and McAdams were the best at their positions in the 1960s.
Ross: Teddy Lehman. He was the speed linebacker that I coveted.
Rowland: There are so many guys where I winced when they went off the board. But I really wanted Rod Shoate. He would've been a perfect fit. What a beast!
Trotter: I was actually hoping to get Sam Bradford. When J.R. picked him third overall, I opted to go with the wishbone offense instead. I also really wanted to get Keith Jackson, but Mike took him with his second pick. Then at the end of the draft, Joe grabbed Elvis Peacock, who I was hoping to snag as one of my returners.
5. Other than your own, which team do you like best and why?
Washington: I like Mike Brooks' defense. He covered a bunch of eras and got players who could play in any era.
Brooks: Jake's team, followed by Toby's. Jake drafted very well, getting great skill players in McDonald, Pruitt, Zabel and Clayton. He has a great group of DBs, and two of the best LBs in Shoate and Hunt. Jake drafted old guys, new guys and even current squad members -- he was ready for the draft. Toby's backfield is outstanding, Owens (he won a Heisman), Sims (he won a Heisman), Washington (he should have won a Heisman) and J.C. Watts (he should have been governor). His LBs are super-fast in George Cumby and Lehman, and outstanding defensive tackles in Lucious Selmon and Rick Bryan.
Ross: I'd say Joe's, simply because he's got two of my all-time favorite Sooners, Jimbo Elrod and -- the greatest of them all -- Lee Roy Selmon. I also loved Toby's picks of "Dr. Death" (Steve Williams) and Wahoo McDaniel -- two of my grappling friends.
Rowland: Joe's defensive line is epic. They'll wreck any offense they line up against. Plus, I'm sure Joe will make them all wear silver shoes. Talk about intimidating!
Trotter: I liked J.R.'s strategy of getting far-and-away the best passing quarterback in Bradford, and flanking him with the four best blockers of the Bob Stoops era. J.R. also did well exploiting OU's deepest position, getting three of the school's top 10 linebackers. The backfields of Mike and Toby, however, are really prolific. Good thing I drafted a defense geared to stuff the run.
#SoonerNationDraft: Complete Results
|Round (Overall Pick)||Selection||General Manager|
|1 (1)||DT Lee Roy Selmon||Joe Washington|
|1 (2)||RB Adrian Peterson||Mike Brooks|
|1 (3)||QB Sam Bradford||Jim Ross|
|1 (4)||RB Billy Sims||Toby Rowland|
|1 (5)||S Roy Williams||Jake Trotter|
|2 (6)||DT Tony Casillas||Jake Trotter|
|2 (7)||RB Joe Washington||Toby Rowland|
|2 (8)||OT Trent Williams||Jim Ross|
|2 (9)||TE Keith Jackson||Mike Brooks|
|2 (10)||DT Dewey Selmon||Joe Washington|
|3 (11)||DT Tommie Harris||Joe Washington|
|3 (12)||LB Brian Bosworth||Mike Brooks|
|3 (13)||DT Gerald McCoy||Jim Ross|
|3 (14)||FB Steve Owens||Toby Rowland|
|3 (15)||LB Rod Shoate||Jake Trotter|
|4 (16)||RB Greg Pruitt||Jake Trotter|
|4 (17)||DT Rick Bryan||Toby Rowland|
|4 (18)||OT Jammal Brown||Jim Ross|
|4 (19)||RB Billy Vessels||Mike Brooks|
|4 (20)||QB Jack Mildren||Joe Washington|
|5 (21)||OG Greg Roberts||Joe Washington|
|5 (22)||WR Ryan Broyles||Mike Brooks|
|5 (23)||LB Jerry Tubbs||Jim Ross|
|5 (24)||LB George Cumby||Toby Rowland|
|5 (25)||RB Tommy McDonald||Jake Trotter|
|6 (26)||S Rickey Dixon||Jake Trotter|
|6 (27)||CB Derrick Strait||Toby Rowland|
|6 (28)||CB Andre Woolfolk||Jim Ross|
|6 (29)||QB Jason White||Mike Brooks|
|6 (30)||PR Antonio Perkins||Joe Washington|
|7 (31)||C Tom Brahaney||Joe Washington|
|7 (32)||WR Eddie Hinton||Mike Brooks|
|7 (33)||OG Davin Joseph||Jim Ross|
|7 (34)||TE Jermaine Gresham||Toby Rowland|
|7 (35)||WR Mark Clayton||Jake Trotter|
|8 (36)||DT Granville Liggins||Jake Trotter|
|8 (37)||DT Lucious Selmon||Toby Rowland|
|8 (38)||DE Cedric Jones||Jim Ross|
|8 (39)||LB Rocky Calmus||Mike Brooks|
|8 (40)||OT Ralph Neely||Joe Washington|
|9 (41)||OT Bob Kalsu||Joe Washington|
|9 (42)||S Zac Henderson||Mike Brooks|
|9 (43)||DT Dusty Dvoracek||Jim Ross|
|9 (44)||LB Teddy Lehman||Toby Rowland|
|9 (45)||LB Daryl Hunt||Jake Trotter|
|10 (46)||QB Jamelle Holieway||Jake Trotter|
|10 (47)||LB Jackie Shipp||Toby Rowland|
|10 (48)||WR Billy Brooks||Jim Ross|
|10 (49)||OG Anthony Phillips||Mike Brooks|
|10 (50)||CB Tony Peters||Joe Washington|
|11 (51)||DE Jimbo Elrod||Joe Washington|
|11 (52)||DE Darrell Reed||Mike Brooks|
|11 (53)||RB Spencer Tilman||Jim Ross|
|11 (54)||WR Tinker Owens||Toby Rowland|
|11 (55)||TE Steve Zabel||Jake Trotter|
|12 (56)||OG Mark Hutson||Jake Trotter|
|12 (57)||K Uwe Von Schamann||Toby Rowland|
|12 (58)||LB Carl McAdams||Jim Ross|
|12 (59)||S Randy Hughes||Mike Brooks|
|12 (60)||P Darrell Royal||Joe Washington|
|13 (61)||K Tony DiRienzo||Joe Washington|
|13 (62)||OT Mike Vaughan||Mike Brooks|
|13 (63)||LB Dante Jones||Jim Ross|
|13 (64)||S Scott Case||Toby Rowland|
|13 (65)||C Kurt Burris||Jake Trotter|
|14 (66)||G Buddy Burris||Jake Trotter|
|14 (67)||DE Dan Cody||Toby Rowland|
|14 (68)||OG Duke Robinson||Jim Ross|
|14 (69)||PR Jack Mitchell||Mike Brooks|
|14 (70)||TE Victor Hicks||Joe Washington|
|15 (71)||S Clendon Thomas||Joe Washington|
|15 (72)||NG Reggie Kinlaw||Mike Brooks|
|15 (73)||DE Keith Gary||Jim Ross|
|15 (74)||S Jason Belser||Toby Rowland|
|15 (75)||CB Bobby Boyd||Jake Trotter|
|16 (76)||OT Jim Weatherall||Jake Trotter|
|16 (77)||DE Kevin Murphy||Toby Rowland|
|16 (78)||S Darrol Ray||Jim Ross|
|16 (79)||DT Raymond Hamilton||Mike Brooks|
|16 (80)||LB Curtis Lofton||Joe Washington|
|17 (81)||LB Rufus Alexander||Joe Washington|
|17 (82)||OG Bill Krisher||Mike Brooks|
|17 (83)||S Quinton Carter||Jim Ross|
|17 (84)||CB Reggie Smith||Toby Rowland|
|17 (85)||OT Louis Oubre||Jake Trotter|
|18 (86)||LB Joe Bowden||Jake Trotter|
|18 (87)||C Vince Carter||Toby Rowland|
|18 (88)||CB Dave Baker||Jim Ross|
|18 (89)||CB Jerry Anderson||Mike Brooks|
|18 (90)||CB Sidney Brown||Joe Washington|
|19 (91)||OG Terry Webb||Joe Washington|
|19 (92)||P Jack Jacobs||Mike Brooks|
|19 (93)||WR Malcolm Kelly||Jim Ross|
|19 (94)||KR Buster Rhymes||Toby Rowland|
|19 (95)||DE Jeremy Beal||Jake Trotter|
|20 (96)||DE Frank Alexander||Jake Trotter|
|20 (97)||OG Steve Williams||Toby Rowland|
|20 (98)||RB DeMarco Murray||Jim Ross|
|20 (99)||DT Derland Moore||Mike Brooks|
|20 (100)||DT Kelly Gregg||Joe Washington|
|21 (101)||S JT Thatcher||Joe Washington|
|21 (102)||C Tom Catlin||Mike Brooks|
|21 (103)||P Jeff Ferguson||Jim Ross|
|21 (104)||PR Jarrail Jackson||Toby Rowland|
|21 (105)||K Tim Lashar||Jake Trotter|
|22 (106)||KR Anthony Stafford||Jake Trotter|
|22 (107)||QB J.C. Watts||Toby Rowland|
|22 (108)||K Garrett Hartley||Jim Ross|
|22 (109)||CB Clyde Powers||Mike Brooks|
|22 (110)||RB De'Mond Parker||Joe Washington|
|23 (111)||RB Quentin Griffin||Joe Washington|
|23 (112)||OT Wade Waker||Mike Brooks|
|23 (113)||KR Juaquin Iglesias||Jim Ross|
|23 (114)||OT Phil Loadholt||Toby Rowland|
|23 (115)||FB Lydell Carr||Jake Trotter|
|24 (116)||CB Aaron Colvin||Jake Trotter|
|24 (117)||P Wahoo McDaniel||Toby Rowland|
|24 (118)||PR Jakie Sandefer||Jim Ross|
|24 (119)||KR Joe Wylie||Mike Brooks|
|24 (120)||FB Kenny King||Joe Washington|
|25 (121)||KR Elvis Peacock||Joe Washington|
|25 (122)||DE Frankie Anderson||Mike Brooks|
|25 (123)||TE Trent Smith||Jim Ross|
|25 (124)||OT Lane Johnson||Toby Rowland|
|25 (125)||P Lance Rentzel||Jake Trotter|
|26 (126)||PR Stanley Wilson||Jake Trotter|
|26 (127)||OG Don Key||Toby Rowland|
|26 (128)||C Ken Mendenhall||Jim Ross|
|26 (129)||K R.D. Lashar||Mike Brooks|
|26 (130)||WR Mark Bradley||Joe Washington|
Joe Washington's Team
Joe Washington made "silver shoes" fashionable while helping lead the Sooners to back-to-back national championships. "Little Joe" was also a consensus All-American halfback, and finished in the top five of the Heisman voting twice. Washington now works in the OU athletic department as executive director of the Varsity O Association, which is for OU's athlete alums.
QB: Jack Mildren, 1969-71
RB: Quentin Griffin, 1999-02
RB: De'Mond Parker, 1996-98
FB: Kenny King, 1975-78
WR: Mark Bradley, 2003-04
TE: Victor Hicks, 1975-78
OT: Ralph Neely, 1962-64
OG: Greg Roberts, 1975-78
C: Tom Brahaney, 1970-72
OG: Terry Webb, 1973-75
OT: Bob Kalsu, 1965-67
DT: Lee Roy Selmon, 1972-75
DT: Tommie Harris, 2001-03
DT: Kelly Gregg, 1995-98
DT: Dewey Selmon, 1972-75
LB: Jimbo Elrod, 1973-75
LB: Curtis Lofton, 2005-07
LB: Rufus Alexander, 2002-06
CB: Tony Peters, 1973-74
CB: Sidney Brown, 1974-76
S: Clendon Thomas, 1955-57
S: J.T. Thatcher, 1997-00
K: Tony DiRienzo, 1973-75
P: Darrell Royal, 1946-49
KR: Elvis Peacock, 1974-77
PR: Antonio Perkins, 2001-04
Mike Brooks' Team
Mike Brooks is an OU football historian, serving the university in that official capacity since the 1996 season. Brooks has become the foremost authority on OU football history, and has freelanced for numerous news outlets, including ESPN, The Oklahoman, Tulsa World, USA Today and the Dallas Morning News.
QB: Jason White, 2000-04
RB: Adrian Peterson, 2004-06
RB: Billy Vessels, 1950-52
WR: Ryan Broyles, 2008-11
WR: Eddie Hinton, 1966-68
TE: Keith Jackson, 1984-87
OT: Mike Vaughan, 1973-76
OG: Anthony Phillips, 1985-88
C: Tom Catlin, 1950-52
OG: Bill Krisher, 1955-57
OT: Wade Walker, 1946-49
DE: Darrell Reed, 1984-87
DT: Derland Moore, 1970-72
NG: Reggie Kinlaw, 1975-78
DT: Raymond Hamilton, 1970-72
DE: Frankie Anderson, 1948-50
LB: Rocky Calmus, 1998-01
LB: Brian Bosworth, 1984-86
CB: Jerry Anderson, 1975-76
CB: Clyde Powers, 1971-73
S: Zac Henderson, 1974-77
S: Randy Hughes, 1972-74
K: R.D. Lashar, 1987-90
P: Indian Jack Jacobs, 1939-41
KR: Joe Wylie, 1970-72
PR: Jack Mitchell, 1946-48
Jim Ross' Team
Jim Ross is a WWE Hall of Fame broadcaster, who's also broadcast NFL and XFL games. He also owns the family brand of J.R.'s BBQ sauces and condiments. His entrance music to wrestling matches is "Boomer Sooner," and he can been seen most autumn Saturdays watching OU games from the sidelines. You can follow him on Twitter (@JRsBBQ).
QB: Sam Bradford, 2007-09
RB: Spencer Tilman, 1982-85
RB: DeMarco Murray, 2007-10
WR: Billy Brooks, 1973-75
WR: Malcolm Kelly, 2005-07
TE: Trent Smith, 1999-02
OT: Jammal Brown, 2001-04
OG: Davin Joseph, 2002-05
C: Ken Mendenhall, 1967-69
OG: Duke Robinson, 2005-08
OT: Trent Williams, 2006-009
DE: Cedric Jones, 1992-95
DT: Gerald McCoy, 2007-09
DT: Dusty Dvoracek, 2002-05
DE: Keith Gary, 1979-80
LB: Jerry Tubbs, 1954-56
LB: Dante' Jones, 1984-87
LB: Carl McAdams, 1963-65
CB: Andre Woolfolk, 1999-02
CB: Dave Baker, 1956-58
S: Darrol Ray, 1976-79
S: Quinton Carter, 2006-10
K: Garrett Hartley, 2004-07
P: Jeff Ferguson, 1998-01
KR: Juaquin Iglesias, 2005-08
PR: Jakie Sandefer, 1956-58
Toby Rowland's Team
Toby Rowland is the play-by-play voice for the Sooner Sports Radio Network, calling football, men's basketball and baseball games. He also hosts the T-Row in the Morning Show on Sportstalk 1400. Before becoming the play-by-play voice for the Sooners, Rowland was an Emmy Award-winning sportscaster for KWTV in Oklahoma City.
QB: J.C. Watts, 1977-80
RB: Joe Washington, 1972-75
RB: Billy Sims, 1975-79
FB: Steve Owens, 1967-69
WR: Tinker Owens, 1972-75
TE: Jermaine Gresham, 2006-08
OT: Phil Loadholt, 2007-08
OG: Steve Williams, 1979-1982
C: Vince Carter, 2001-04
OG: Don Key, 1979-81
OT: Lane Johnson, 2010-12
DE: Dan Cody, 2000-04
DT: Rick Bryan, 1980-83
DT: Lucious Selmon, 1971-73
DE: Kevin Murphy, 1981-85
LB: George Cumby, 1975-79
LB: Teddy Lehman, 2000-03
LB: Jackie Shipp, 1980-83
CB: Derrick Strait, 2000-03
CB: Reggie Smith, 2005-07
S: Scott Case, 1982-83
S: Jason Belser, 1988-91
K: Uwe Von Schamann, 1975-78
P: Wahoo McDaniel, 1957-59
KR: Buster Rhymes, 1980-84
PR: Jarrail Jackson, 1996-99
Jake Trotter's Team
Jake Trotter joined ESPN.com in 2011 after four years with The (Oklahoma City) Oklahoman, covering OU and Big 12 football. He's a graduate of Washington and Lee (Va.) University and lives in Oklahoma City with his wife.
QB: Jamelle Holieway, 1985-88
RB: Greg Pruitt, 1970-72
RB: Tommy McDonald, 1954-56
FB: Lydell Carr, 1984-87
WR: Mark Clayton, 2001-04
TE: Steve Zabel, 1967-69
OT: Louis Oubre, 1977-80
OG: Mark Hutson, 1984-87
C: Kurt Burris, 1952-54
OG: Buddy Burris, 1946-48
OT: Jim Weatherall, 1949-51
DE: Jeremy Beal, 2007-2010
DT: Tony Casillas, 1982-85
DT: Granville Liggins, 1965-67
DE: Frank Alexander, 2008-11
LB: Rod Shoate, 1972-74
LB: Daryl Hunt, 1975-78
LB: Joe Bowden, 1989-1991
CB: Bobby Boyd, 1957-59
CB: Aaron Colvin, 2010-13
S: Roy Williams, 1998-01
S: Rickey Dixon, 1984-87
K: Tim Lashar, 1983-86
P: Lance Rentzel, 1962-64
KR: Anthony Stafford, 1985-88
PR: Stanley Wilson, 1979-82
Five notable Sooners who went undrafted
1. Josh Heupel, QB, 1999-00: Jason White and Sam Bradford were the only two passing quarterbacks taken.
2. Max Boydston, DE, 1951-54: Given the lack of depth at defensive end, hard to believe this All-American got overlooked.
3. Bob Harrison, C, 1956-58: Too many prolific centers to choose from out of the Wilkinson era.
4. Terry Crouch, OG, 1979-81: The guard position was just too deep.
5. Mike Gaddis, RB, 1988-91: The only Switzer all-conference halfback not to get taken.
-- Jake Trotter