Crowded Sooners backfield adds Madu

Mossis Madu ran for 114 yards and three touchdowns in the 2008 Big 12 championship. As a junior in 2009, he accounted for just 86 yards of total offense.

Madu has moved back to running back this spring in hopes of recapturing his performances in 2008, when he ran for 475 yards and scored six touchdowns.

Last spring, he moved to receiver with DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown slated to get the bulk of the carries in the running game. Oklahoma coaches wanted the playmaker to get the ball, and they saw opportunities at receiver for the 6-foot, 200-pounder.

Although he showed progress through fall practices after moving from slot receiver to wideout, Madu never found a place in a Sooners receiving rotation that struggled for much of the 2009 season. Madu caught just seven passes. With Brown gone and Murray being held out of heavy contact this spring, Madu has returned to the backfield and is getting plenty of touches in the spring.

"I could be selfish and say that last year was a lost year,” Madu told The Oklahoman. "But it was one of those things that they asked me to do. They told me beforehand that I had an opportunity to start there. But in the end it was just harder for me to adapt to.”

Madu and fellow senior Murray are the most experienced running backs in Norman, but the Sooners have plenty of young running backs that will be itching for carries of their own when the season arrives.

Sophomore Jermie Calhoun will be in the mix this spring, but Jonathan Miller won't be active this spring after knee surgery. Freshmen Brennan Clay and Roy Finch could redshirt, but they won't arrive at fall camp with plans to sit out their first season.