Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Coaches' corner: OT Josiah St. John
By Brandon Chatmon
After recruiting them for several months, Oklahoma's coaching staff was finally able to talk publicly about the players the Sooners added to the program on signing day. Over the next week or so, SoonerNation will review some of the key things coaches had to say about the players signed at each position group during their signing day webcast on Soonersports.com.
With Lane Johnson moving on to the NFL, the Sooners needed to bring in some immediate competition at the tackle position. Junior college signee Josiah St. John (Athens, Texas/Trinity Valley Community College) fits the bill perfectly. At 6-foot-7, 300 pounds, St. John brings size and athleticism to the Sooners offensive line.
"We were looking for an older mature guy who can play tackle and help us at that position," co-offensive coordinator Jay Norvell said. "That was an area of need with Lane Johnson leaving the program. He gives us maturity, gives us length and incredible depth at the position."
Tyrus Thompson, who saw extensive time at right tackle and spot duty at left tackle in 2012, could have stepped right in at left tackle with Daryl Williams at right tackle, but St. John will provide quality competition for both players, making nobody's starting spot secure under new offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh.
"Josiah St. John is a big tackle, all of 6-foot-6, 305 or so pounds and is an excellent athlete at that position," Sooners coach Bob Stoops said.
The Sooners fully expect St. John earn playing time this fall, with Stoops saying the Sooners don't bring in junior college players unless they anticipate immediate impact. Across the board, OU's offensive staff seems to believe St. John, the No. 6 player in the ESPNJC 100, could become a key contributor in 2013.
"Josiah St. John is somebody we expect can come in and help us immediately," running backs coach Cale Gundy said.