Thu Oct 01 05:24pm EDT
Sam Bradford has "looked good" through Oklahoma's first three practices this week, according to coach Bob Stoops, but unless Stoops is planning to pull a Hayden Fox Saturday night in Miami, the Sooners' star quarterback is on the sideline for at least one more week with a bum throwing shoulder:
Bradford practiced with the team and shared snaps with Jones throughout the first three days of practice this week. But Jones will take over as No. 1 when practice gets underway this afternoon in Norman.
"Sam has made daily progress, but we don't feel like he's quite where he needs to be yet," Stoops said in a statement released by OU.
Speculation aside, Bradford probably won't even dress out against the 'Canes, all the better to remain on track for the first priority: Getting the Heisman winner back in time for Texas on Oct. 17. If OU can get out of Miami with Jones in the saddle and get Bradford back next week for an effective warm-up against Baylor, the extra week's worth of rest will be worth. And if they're definitively bounced from the mythical championship race with their second loss with Landry "Lip Warmer" Jones looking more like he did in the second half against BYU than in last week's high-flying barrage against Tulsa, well, beating Texas for the Big 12 was always the real goal, anyway.
In the meantime, keep an eye on the line, which has moved up in the first hour since Bradford was ruled out, taking the Sooners from seven-point favorites on the road this morning to –7.5 or –8 at last check, depending on the service. That's the work of the hardcore bettors who compulsively watch the lines and subsequently are more likely to get bogged down among the trees -- "Injured Starting Quarterback vs. Healthy Starting Quarterback" -- rather than the forest -- "Heisman Trophy Winner On the Field vs. Heisman Trophy Winner on the Sideline." (Oklahoma fans may be thinking the same thing.) Miami has to get a half-point or so out of Bradford's absence soon.