NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops expects Demarcus Granger to return to the Sooners next season even though he sent his starting defensive tackle home prior to the Fiesta Bowl following an arrest for alleged shoplifting.
``I expect him back,'' Stoops said. ``We'll see what else we do with him. I'm sure there'll be some other disciplinary action.''
Granger, who had started 11 games this season for No. 3 Oklahoma, had recorded 35 tackles to tie for the most among the Sooners' defensive linemen heading into the Fiesta Bowl. He also had 3 1/2 sacks among his 8 1/2 tackles for a loss this season.
The sophomore was suspended after he was arrested Saturday. Police said the 21-year-old Granger admitted trying to steal a jacket from a Burlington Coat Factory store in Tempe, Ariz.
Without Granger and two starters in the secondary, Oklahoma's defense allowed 349 yards rushing to West Virginia in a 48-28 loss. It was the most yards rushing ever allowed by Oklahoma in a bowl game and the most given up by a Stoops-coached Sooners team.
``I think that's highly overstating his importance,'' Stoops said of Granger's absence after the Fiesta Bowl. ``No, that's not the deal. There was a lot of missed tackles, a lot of guys not being in position, discipline containing the ball, just different issues and different occasions. Rarely was it up inside, I'll say that.''
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