John E. Hoover: Sooners RB Abdul Adams has transferred to Syracuse

John E. Hoover: Sooners RB Abdul Adams has transferred to Syracuse

Oklahoma running back Abdul Adams (23) evades a tackle by Iowa State defensive back Reggie Wilkerson (3) during an NCAA college football game in Norman, Okla., Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

The Oklahoma running back room got a little thinner on Monday.

Abdul Adams, a sophomore who opened the 2017 season as the Sooners’ starter and owns an unbreakable Sooners record, has transferred to Syracuse.

The move was announced by Syracuse Monday afternoon after Adams began classwork at the New York school. He will sit out the 2018 season as a transfer.

Adams finished the season third on the team with 542 rushing yards on just 59 carries, an average of 9.2 yards per carry.

He started games against UTEP (seven carries for 53 yards), Ohio State (six for 20), Baylor (11 for 164) and Iowa State (three for 42) before third-year sophomore Rodney Anderson took over as the primary ball carrier during the second half of the season.

Anderson finished the year with 1,161 yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground to go with 17 pass receptions for 281 yards and five TDs. True freshman Trey Sermon was second with 744 yards and five touchdowns in 2017. OU also has four-star running back T.J. Pledger coming in from IMG Academy.

Adams was third on the team as a true freshman as well, with 283 yards as the backup to 1,000-yard runners Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon.

The 5-foot-11, 205-pound Adams, from Landover, Maryland, went down in OU history against Baylor last season when he broke off a school-record 99-yard touchdown run.

Sooner fans will also remember Adams for two ignominious plays: an early fumble at Ohio State and an early fumble at Oklahoma State that was eventually ruled an incomplete pass.

Adams suffered an ankle injury that knocked him out of the Sooners’ loss to Iowa State, and he only carried the football 24 times in OU’s final nine games.

Adams’ final statistical contribution in Norman was a 62-yard, eight-carry performance in the season-finale against West Virginia.


Columnist John E. Hoover is co-host of “Further Review with Hoover & Rew” and can be heard every weekday on The Franchise in Tulsa from noon to 3 p.m. with co-host Lauren Rew. In Oklahoma City, catch him Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 10:25 and every Friday afternoon at 4:05. Listen at fm107.7 in OKC, fm107.9/am1270 in Tulsa, on The Franchise app, or click the “Listen” tab on The Franchise home page. Visit his personal page at


Hoover wrote for the Tulsa World for 24 years before joining The Franchise, where he's now co-host of "Further Review" on The Franchise Tulsa (weekdays 12-3, fm107.9/am1270) . In his time at the World, Hoover won numerous writing and reporting awards, including in 2011 National Beat Writer of the Year from the Associated Press Sports Editors for his work covering the Oklahoma Sooners. Hoover also covered Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Oral Roberts and the NFL as a beat writer. From 2012 to 2016, Hoover was the World's lead sports columnist. As a columnist, Hoover won national awards in 2012 and 2014 from the National Athletic Trainers Association for reporting on sports medicine and in 2015 won first place in sports columns from the Oklahoma Society of Professional Journalists. After receiving a journalism degree from East Central University, Hoover worked at newspapers in Ada, Okmulgee, Tahlequah and Waynesville, Mo. He played football at Ada High School and grew up in North Pole, Alaska. Hoover and his family live in Broken Arrow.

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