The short answer is yes, the Sooners have the talent to win the conference title. However, here is a look at why Oklahoma has a legitimate chance to be champions again.
On the offensive side of the ball, Oklahoma has an edge simply because of the talent and football IQ of Baker Mayfield. Although it will be hard to replace the production in the running game with the loss of both Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon. For the offense to be a threat again, Oklahoma will look to Rodney Anderson to carry the load of the running game. As far as the passing game, the loss of Heisman candidate Dede Westbrook leaves a hole that will need to be filled with wide receiver transfer Jeff Badet and tight end Mark Andrews. All these talented skill position players will be complimented by a solid returning offensive line led by Orlando Brown.
Oklahoma will rely on sophomore linebacker Caleb Kelly to help anchor the defensive squad. Last season as a freshman, Kelly stepped up to help a defense that struggled in the early season, and helped to turn them in to a respectable unit. Obo Okornkwo will also continue to play a large role on the defense at the linebacker position as well. However, as strong as the linebacking corps is, the secondary will have to step up if the Sooners want to contend in a pass heavy conference.
Lincoln Riley will lead the Sooners next season, and that should make the rest of the conference a little nervous. Riley is a bright young coach that has an offensive mind that has helped to win the past two Big 12 titles. Riley has already proven that he can recruit, after having a stellar month of June on the recruiting trail. Yes, Lincoln Riley is young, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t ready to step up and lead this program to a third straight conference title.