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Dean's Blog: Get Used To Dru Samia

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POOF! OU FINDS FUTURE STAR AND ALL OF A SUDDEN HAS AN EFFICIENT OFFENSE LINE

I have a feeling if you gave a truth serum to the OU offensive coaches and asked about the player they are most thankful for on offense, it wouldn’t be the player you might choose. In fact you may not choose that player in the first half dozen guesses.

Not Mayfield, Perine or Mixon. No, not Shepard, Westbrook or Darlington. It might just be Dru Samia (pronounced Sah-MEE-uh). Yes, Dru Samia. Listen to the attached video and you’ll learn why I say that. The offensive coordinator believes the true freshman out of Danville, CA is the missing link to an offensive line that was struggling mightily through five games, including the disaster in Dallas.

OU’s revolving door offensive line was en route to setting a dubious record for sacks allowed and more harassment than a QB should have to endure in a lifetime. But Samia has led the way in helping this unit become more cohesive, efficient and productive – and the numbers prove it. Especially last Saturday when OU ran for 405 yards and six touchdowns and allowed just one sack.

Must’ve felt like Christmas for Baker Mayfield, who has reminded us old-timers of what Archie Manning looked like his first few years in New Orleans. Without improvement up front, Mayfield was headed either to the hospital for broken bones or an insane asylum. Hard to explain what it’s like with big, strong, fast guys chasing after you with bad intentions. But it’s not good. Will drive a QB nuts! And give him a case of the yips – or flinches, for you non-golfing readers.

Samia told me today he’s the same 6-5 by 290 pounds he was upon arrival in Norman this summer, but that his physique and conditioning are exponentially improved.

For a little background, Samia was a 4-star recruit recognized as the 136 player nationally by Scout. His best offer aside from the Sooners was UCLA. He credits work he did with his uncle for months leading up to heading to OU as being instrumental in helping him make the transition.

Everyone I talk with stresses Samia’s intelligence, maturity, instincts and competitiveness. Projecting down the road, if Samia is half what coaches and players unanimously say he is, he and  redshirt freshman LT Orlando Brown should anchor what could be a stout Sooner offensive line for the next three years. That’s a critical piece to the puzzle and a far cry from where OU sat driving out of the Texas State Fair 16 days ago.

I talked with Lincoln Riley and Samia after practice on Monday. Enjoy.

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