NORMAN — When Oklahoma opens its 2012 season at UTEP on Sept. 1, Landry Jones could have exactly one receiver — junior Kenny Stills — at his disposal with any big-time college football game experience.
Junior receivers Trey Franks and Jaz Reynolds and sophomore wideout Kameel Jackson — along with sophomore defensive back Quentin Hayes — were suspended indefinitely for violating team rules, coach Bob Stoops announced Wednesday night in a news release.
(Story continued below...)
Franks' and Reynolds' suspensions were first reported by OUInsider.com, which said Franks is out for the entire 2012 season and Reynolds for seven games.
Wednesday's announcement makes the development of true freshman Trey Metoyer even more vital. Metoyer received rave reviews from teammates and coaches, and backed them up with a six-catch, 72-yard performance in the spring game.
Still, the lack of experience from Sooner pass-catchers is suddenly a serious concern for a team that entered spring expecting the position to be a strength.
Stills has started 25 games in his two years on campus, and had 786 yards and five touchdowns last season. But both he and Jones struggled after star Ryan Broyles, the NCAA's all-time receptions leader who was drafted last month by the Detroit Lions, tore his ACL in the middle of the 2011-12 season.
“We didn't know what to do once Ryan went down to tell you the truth,” Stills said a week before the spring game. “We never saw that coming, and it hit us really hard.
“The spring has helped us figure out what we're going to do.”
Now, the Sooners could be forced to rely on Stills and lots of newcomers. In the fall, true freshmen Durron Neal, Sterling Shepard and Derrick Woods will join the team, as will junior college transfer Courtney Gardner.
Reynolds, a junior, was OU's third-leading receiver last season, with 41 receptions, 715 yards and five touchdowns.