The Sooners picked up a wide receiver on Saturday night. They also added a much-needed playmaker to their return teams.
Penn State wideout Justin Brown is transferring to Oklahoma, according to ESPN's Joe Schad. Brown expects to join the Sooners on Monday.
As a proven performer -- he finished 2011 with 35 receptions, 517 yards and two touchdowns -- Brown brings experience to a wide receiving corps that will open the season with just one player with a catch in an OU uniform (Kenny Stills).
At 6-foot-3, he instantly becomes the biggest receiver on the team, too -- an element that’s been missing from the offense in recent years.
But maybe just as important, Brown could spark OU’s return teams, which have lagged at times in the past five years.
Ryan Broyles was a playmaker on punt return, but after his season-ending knee injury, the Sooners’ punt return attack with Stills was virtually nonexistent.
Kick return has been a bigger problem. The Sooners ranked No. 65 in kick returns last season, using a combination of Trey Franks, Roy Finch and Brennan Clay. OU, in fact, hasn’t returned a kick for a touchdown since DeMarco Murray did it twice in 2007.
Brown, however, has been a dangerous punt returner for the Nittany Lions. As the team’s primary punt returner, he ranked 36th in the country last season. Brown also returned punts for Penn State as a sophomore in 2010. He did not return any kickoffs for Penn State.
Brown is not the second coming of former OU All-American returner Antonio Perkins, but the Sooners need playmakers in the return game. Brown appears to be just that.