What did we think/hope would happen?
Returning starters Corey Nelson and Tom Wort would thrive in Mike Stoops' defense, which would let play like more traditional linebackers – stopping the run and covering short passing routes.
OU would also start to develop some depth by playing backups Franklin Shannon and Aaron Franklin.
What did happen?
The LBs struggled all year long. The lone bright spot was the play and potential of Shannon. Shannon showed speed and power at LB that has not been seen at the position for awhile. In addition, he's shown good coverage skills and run-stopping ability. He was the only LB that could be called a playmaker this season.
Wort is not a Mike LB. He just isn't. He appears to have lost his lateral quickness from his freshman year ACL injury. Straight line, he seems fine, but he really struggles in pursuit laterally, often overrunning plays and finding himself unable to recover. In addition, he's not tackling well, get...