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July 31, 2012

Penn State WR hears from Oklahoma

by Carey Murdock & Josh McCuistion

The Oklahoma Sooners may be interested in joining in on the Penn State transfer sweepstakes. Tuesday, Nittany Lion running back Silas Redd announced his intentions to transfer to USC after a cross-country visit to the land of Troy.

Now it appears there has been contact between the University of Oklahoma and 6-foot-3, 209-pound, senior wide receiver Justin Brown. Brown was Penn State's second leading receiver in 2011 catching 35 passes for 517 yards and two touchdowns.

That contact has been brief and sparse according to Brown.

"They've been in contact," Brown confirmed Tuesday evening via text message. "Not that much contact. They've backed off."

If Brown's numbers seem small by Oklahoma standards, they are. PSU was ranked as the 96th passing offense in the NCAA last season.

Rumors on message boards indicated Brown was already headed to Oklahoma. But Brown said those rumors were untrue when pressed if he was indeed transferring to Oklahoma.

"Not as of now," he responded.

The Sooners' interest in Brown makes sense. Courtney Gardner, OU's standout junior college wide receiver, failed to qualify for the Sooners this summer. That leaves another scholarship, and a major opportunity for an experienced receiver to come in and make an immediate impact.

Senior quarterback Landry Jones only has one receiver returning, Kenny Stills, who has logged a catch in a college game.

The Sooners will rely on freshmen Trey Metoyer, who starred during spring football scrimmages, as well as true freshmen High School All-Americans Sterling Shepard, Durron Neal and Derrick Woods.

The Sooners also received positive news this week as their other junior college receiver, Lacoltan Bester, graduated from Mississippi Community College and is clear to compete for the Sooners this fall.

The Sooners also have three receivers from last season's squad who are on suspension in Jaz Reynolds, Kameel Jackson and Trey Franks. Reynolds appeared recently on an official roster released by the University of Oklahoma, but that roster was quickly taken down after reports started swirling Reynolds would return.

Stoops has not ruled out the return of any of his suspended receivers and their "backed off" approach with Brown could further strengthen the rumors one or more of those receivers could return to the roster this fall.

Stoops said he will make that determination Thursday.

But as of tonight, Brown needs that communication to pick up if he is to be a part of the 2012 Oklahoma roster.



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