Oklahoma football: 5 most underrated players in Oklahoma Sooners history

Sterling Shepard, Oklahoma Sooners. (Photo by Jackson Laizure/Getty Images)
Sterling Shepard, Oklahoma Sooners. (Photo by Jackson Laizure/Getty Images) /
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Samaje Perine, Oklahoma Sooners
Samaje Perine, Oklahoma Sooners. (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images) /

The five most underrated players in Oklahoma football history.

There are few programs quite like Oklahoma football in college football.

Outside of a few years in the 1990s, when have the Oklahoma Sooners been bad? Exactly, and that’s why when we discuss blue-blood programs across college football, the Sooners are one of a handful of teams who immediately come to mind. When a college team wins as much and as prolifically as Oklahoma has, it’s simply undeniable.

To date, Oklahoma has won over 900 games, been to 53 bowl games, won 49 conference championships, claimed seven national titles and left another 11 on the table. The Sooners have had 80 consensus All-Americans in their illustrious history. Even more impressive, seven of their star players have brought the Heisman Trophy back to Norman.

Though the Sooners haven’t won a national title since 2000, they have been to four of the last five College Football Playoffs. Sadly, Oklahoma has never won a single national semifinal game over the last half-decade. Will that change or will the Sooners continue to struggle against the likes of Clemson, Ohio State and SEC blue-bloods?

Historically, Oklahoma has had so much talent on the offensive side of the ball. Its history at quarterback, running back and wide receiver is jaw-dropping. They’ve also had plenty of great players in the trenches, in the linebacking corps and in the secondary. But what about players who are a tad underrated? Yes, they’ve had more than a handful of those guys, too.

Here are five underrated players to ever star for Oklahoma football.

Scouting Report. player. 5. 815. Pick Analysis. RB. (2014-16). Samaje Perine

Samaje Perine was a record-setting back for Oklahoma football.

Running back Samaje Perine may be entering his fourth NFL season on his second stint with the Cincinnati Bengals, but we can’t overlook how incredible his three years at Oklahoma were. Perine only played three years for the Sooners but rushed for over 1,000 yards every single season in Norman.

As a true freshman in 2014, Perine had 263 carries for 1,713 yards and 21 touchdowns. He took home Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year. Perine was First-Team All-Big 12 and earned a Second-Team All-American nod. While that was the end of his individual accolades in Norman, Perine remained a successful running back for the Sooners over the next two seasons.

During his sophomore campaign of 2015, he had 226 carries for 1,349 yards and 16 touchdowns. Oklahoma made the College Football Playoff for the first time in school history that season. Then in his junior season in 2017, Perine had another 196 carries for 1,060 yards and 12 touchdowns in only 10 games. He left school with 685 carries for 4,122 yards and 49 touchdowns in 36 games.

Perine would be a fourth-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. He spent two seasons in the nation’s capital before splitting his 2019 season with the Bengals and the Miami Dolphins. Perine re-upped with the Bengals after he was claimed off waivers. Had Perine been part of the 2017 Oklahoma team, maybe the Sooners beat Georgia in the Rose Bowl?