The list of players opting out of the 2020 season continues to grow. One of the latest ones to reportedly do so also happens to be one of the biggest. According to Jason Kersey of The Athletic, Oklahoma running back Kennedy Brooks informed coach Lincoln Riley Sunday afternoon that he was opting out of the upcoming season. Neither Brooks himself, or Oklahoma, has made the decision official.
Roughly 40 players at the Power Five level are skipping the upcoming season, which has already been thrown into flux due to the coronavirus pandemic. Among the biggest names to do so are Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons, Minnesota receiver Rashod Bateman, Purdue receiver Rondale Moore and Virginia Tech cornerback Caleb Farley.
Brooks is up there as one of the most important names to know. The redshirt junior has been the Sooners' top running back for each of the past two seasons, notching 1,000-yard rushing efforts in each. In all, Brooks has rushed for 2,067 yards and 18 touchdowns. A second-team All-Big 12 honoree by league's coaches and media last year, Brooks had all-conference, if not All-America, potential yet again in 2020.
The reported departure is also a massive blow to Oklahoma's ground game, which perhaps less-famously has consistently been one of the nation's best over the past few years. Trey Sermon, another reliable option from the past three years, transferred to Ohio State. Rhamondre Stevenson, who had 515 yards rushing and six touchdowns in 2019, will miss the first several games due to an NCAA suspension.
Oklahoma is also down wide receiver Jadon Haselwood, who will miss the early part of the season after suffering a leg injury in the spring.