While the chances he plays this season are slim, the Sooners are high on the potential of 6-foot-9, 325-pound redshirt freshman offensive tackle Derek Farniok.
“What really impresses me about him is how hard he works,” said Daryl Williams, who is the favorite to start at right tackle. “When I first saw him I'll be honest I thought he was gonna be lazy or not be able to move, but he's really a hard worker. One of the hardest workers on the team.”
Farniok’s brother, Tom, started 13 games for Iowa State as a redshirt freshman last season. It will be tough for Farniok to do the same and crack OU’s lineup in 2012. Lane Johnson is an automatic to open the season as the starting left tackle, and Williams is likely to start right tackle, where he started the Sooners’ first game last season. OU also is bringing in junior-college transfer Will Latu, and Tyrus Thompson is entering his third year in the program. But it might not be long before Farniok, who hails from Sioux Falls, S.D., becomes a factor, too.
"He's worked his butt off this offseason," said offensive line coach James Patton. "Derek has want-to. He's just got to keep practicing. He's a young guy, a redshirt freshman, and is very green from a fundamental standpoint. He's just got to learn our stuff, and he will.”