Cody Ford went in the second round (No. 38 overall) to the Bills, Bobby Evans went in the third round (No. 97 overall) to the Rams, both Dru Samia (No. 114 overall) and Ben Powers (No. 123 overall) went in the fourth. This all comes after the Sooners offensive line won the Joe Moore Award for 2018, recognizing the nation’s best collective o-line unit.
While the draft and award both speak to the tremendous collection of individual talent assembled this past season, more than that it highlights offensive line coach Bill Bedenbuagh’s tremendous acumen for developing high-quality athletes on the front line.
Since Bedenbaugh’s arrival in 2013 Oklahoma football has averaged no less than 217 yards per game on the ground each season and have produced eight NFL draft picks on the offensive line including this past year’s historic haul.
Bedenbuagh has been a talented recruiter, but his real skill comes once he gets guys onto campus. Two years ago he turned Orlando Brown from the No. 37 tackle in the 2014 class into the best left tackle in college football. He made Cody Ford an NFL prospect at four different potential positions. He had the foresight to move Bobby Evans over to left tackle to take the place of Brown this past season and he was patient enough with Dru Samia, moving him to a few different positions before finding his natural home at right guard.
Bedenbuagh has a knack for seeing the big picture and moving every piece into the proper place to serve it.Eagles alum Kyler Murray began the processions as the draft’s top overall pick to the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday night, and two of his high school teammates followed suit by hearing their names called during the second day of the draft.
Allen’s offensive line took center stage locally, with alums Greg Little and Bobby Evans both learning their professional destinations. Little was picked early on Friday, drafted No. 37 overall to the Carolina Panthers, while Evans will head west to join the Los Angeles Rams after the Super Bowl runners-up picked the offensive lineman with the 97th pick.
The two linemen started at left tackle during their final collegiate campaigns, with Evans protecting Murray’s blind side at Oklahoma and Little anchoring the left side of the line at Ole Miss.
Little came away from his junior season with the Rebels picked as an All-America second-team selection by multiple outlets while also receiving all-SEC first-team honors. He was a finalist for the Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award – an accolade annually given to the top offensive player in Division I football.
Evans, meanwhile, manned left tackle for a Sooner line that, together, received the Joe Moore Award for the best offensive line in the country. Evans concludes his time in Norman as a three-time all-Big 12 selection, earning second-team honors in 2018.Cody Ford didn’t get selected in the first round, but Oklahoma’s talented offensive lineman did learn where his NFL journey will begin on Friday night.
Ford was selected by the Buffalo Bills with the sixth pick in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Ford has an outstanding career for the Sooners, which included a shift from offensive guard to tackle during his senior year. He’s the first of four OU offensive linemen expected to be drafted this weekend, joining Bobby Evans, Ben Powers and Dru Samia.
Ford was among four Oklahoma players who declared early for the NFL Draft. He was a two-year starter for Oklahoma after suffering a season-ending injury three games into his redshirt freshman season.
“I’m thrilled for Cody. He had to overcome a ton here at OU with the really bad injury against Ohio State in his first year and then moving positions,” Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley said. “He’s one of the nastiest offensive linemen I’ve ever coached, and I think he was probably the most dominant tackle in the country last year. Seeing him now as a high draft pick is amazing. His best ball is in front of him.”Bobby Evans became OU’s second offensive lineman to be selected on Friday night.
Evans was picked in the third round by the Los Angeles Rams with the 97th overall pick. The Rams moved up four spots to get Evans.Evans was a teammate of Murray at Allen (Texas) High School. He chose for early entry into the NFL Draft with Ford and the decision paid off for both.