By Dean Blevins, NEWS 9
NORMAN, Okla. -- After Curtis Lofton decided to leave a year before his final season with the Sooners, Ryan Reynolds was considered a key to the OU defense.
Reynolds came to the Sooners as an impressive incoming freshman. During his first two years he gained the attention of his coaches, but was soon sidelined by an ACL injury.
The five-time national judo champion said he's finally healthy again and playing at full speed.
"I finally got to go through a whole winter and summer workout," Reynolds said. "I was training really hard and I think I am back to where I was."
Stoops agrees, citing the Las Vegas native as a vital element of the team's defense.
"He's really the main glue in there for all those guys, for alignments and making adjustments and getting calls right," Stoops said. "When he's doing a great job of it, you can tell he's just more and more comfortable."
With the team's success this season, Reynolds is quick to point out the team's focus.
"I think I've played a lot better than I did last year. I still have a long way to go; us as a defense have a long way to go," Reynolds said. "We have the opportunity to be a great defense; we just have to take it week by week and really prepare for each team, like we have been."
OU faces Baylor Saturday on the Bears' territory at 11:30 a.m.