Oklahoma Has Its Hands Full With Mecole Hardman And Return Game

Oklahoma Has Its Hands Full With Mecole Hardman And Return Game

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Oklahoma Has Its Hands Full With Mecole Hardman And Return Game

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Mecole Hardman and his kickoff returns could pose a threat to the Oklahoma Sooners

Georgia wide receiver Mecole Hardman is one of the SEC’s best all-around athletes, which should worry the Oklahoma Sooners coaches and special teamers.

Thanks DawgsOnTop for pointing out these statistics.

Hardman has proven to be a reliable receiver for quarterback Jake Fromm, catching 22 passes for 323 yards and 3 touchdowns this past season.

However, the sophomore speedster has also earned respect as one of the nation’s elite kick returners — something Oklahoma, who’s been notoriously bad this season in kick and punt coverage, will surely take into consideration when Georgia and Oklahoma meet in the Rose Bowl.

Though he is yet to take a kickoff return to the house, no SEC player averages more yards per kick return than Hardman, who also ranks 11th in the nation at 27.33 yards per return. On 15 returns this season, Hardman has totaled 410 return yards. (It is also important to note that Hardman’s return opportunities have been limited as a result of Georgia’s defense not allowing many scores.)

Hardman also ranks 16th nationally in punt returns, averaging 10.8 yards per return.

As excited as Georgia fans may get every time #4 touches the ball, Oklahoma’s probably not looking forward to facing the dangerous returner.

The Sooners have struggled this season stopping opposing returners, ranking 93rd in the nation in terms of kickoff return yards allowed at 22.63 yards allowed per return.

If that stat does not get Hardman excited to face Oklahoma’s special teams, this one will….

The Sooners rank 128 out of 130 in the nation in punt returns yards allowed, allowing an average of 15.7 yards given up per punt return.

When Hardman fields his first punt or kickoff of the Rose Bowl, Georgia and Oklahoma fans will both be holding their breaths, but for different reasons.


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