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Tuesday, July 16, 2013
2015 ESPN 300 targets: Oklahoma

By Bob Przybylo

Most of the time when discussing Oklahoma and underclassmen recruiting, it’s a pretty nonexistent topic. Not the case for the Class of 2015 as the Sooners have already netted two ESPN 300 commitments.

Here is a look at eight other notable 2015 OU targets to go with the Sooners' two early pledges:

1. OT Jalin Barnett (Lawton, Okla./Lawton)
6-foot-4, 285 pounds
ESPN 300 rank: No. 8.

Jalin Barnett
In-state offensive lineman Jalin Barnett is the top-ranked guard in the 2015 ESPN 300.
Why they want him: Never want to let a top in-state recruit leave and the Sooners have made sure early Barnett knows how much they covet him. Barnett made three trips to OU in a two-month period.

Who else wants him: Other schools are going to enter the mix, but right now it looks like Stanford and Auburn are the two making Barnett think about possibly looking at an out of state school. Both have offered.

2. RB Soso Jamabo (Plano, Texas/West)
6-3, 200
ESPN 300 rank: No. 18

Why they want him: OU takes a backseat to nobody with running back tradition, and Jamabo would fit in perfectly with the lineage of top backs. Jamabo talked with the OU coaches at the Dallas-area satellite camp in June.

Who else wants him: Texas, Michigan and Ohio State are some of his big-time offers. This could be another classic recruiting showdown between the Longhorns and Sooners.

3. CB Kendall Sheffield (Missouri City, Texas/Marshall)
6-0, 170
ESPN 300 rank: No. 19.

Why they want him: OU recognized extremely early how talented Sheffield is and what an asset he could be in the secondary. A couple of proposed visits, however, have not happened yet.

Who else wants him: LSU, Florida, Texas and Texas A&M are early suitors. The Aggies might be considered a slight favorite because of the close proximity of the campus to his hometown.

4. WR DaMarkus Lodge (Cedar Hill, Texas/Cedar Hill)
6-2, 185
ESPN 300 rank: No. 41

Why they want him: If there’s one spot OU fans don’t question the coach, it’s with wide receivers coach Jay Norvell. OU has a great bond with Cedar Hill coaches and would love for that to continue with Lodge.

Who else wants him: Rinse and repeat with Texas and A&M both in the hunt, but Baylor will also be a school to watch as Bears are definitely becoming more of a factor with each recruiting cycle.

5. OLB Malik Jefferson (Mesquite, Texas/Poteet)
6-2, 212
ESPN 300 rank: No. 60.

Why they want him: OU was the first school to offer Jefferson. No idea if that’s going to matter in the long run, but the Sooners attacked early. Jefferson has talked about a visit to OU, but it hasn’t occurred just yet.

Who else wants him: Ole Miss got in there nice and early and Jefferson is coming off a visit to Baylor last week. A lot of the usual suspects are in the mix, though, like Texas, A&M, Ohio State and Michigan.

6. DT Marquise Overton (Jenks, Okla./Jenks)
6-1, 310
ESPN 300 rank: No. 86.

Why they want him: Overton is the only recruit in the list without a current OU offer, but the interest is certainly there for the Sooners. OU defensive coordinator Mike Stoops has made it clear how much OU wants to be in the Overton sweepstakes.

Who else wants him: Among his current offers, Baylor and Oregon State are the biggest players. Overton grew up a huge OU fan so it feels like if the Sooners get serious about Overton, the race won’t be that dramatic.

7. OG Josh Wariboko (Oklahoma City/Casady)
6-3, 310
ESPN 300 rank: No. 88.

Why they want him: Committed. Wariboko committed to OU last month, becoming the first member of the class. OU offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh and Wariboko have quickly developed a great rapport.

Who else wants him: Other schools such as Clemson have tried to get in the conversation, but Wariboko is from a family of OU alums and Sooners fans should be able to relax with his pledge.

8. RB Chris Warren (Rockwall, Texas/Rockwall)
6-2, 216
ESPN 300 rank: No. 122

Why they want him: Warren was the No. 1 standout at OU’s camp last month and rightfully earned the offer. He also visited OU for the spring game and said there is something about OU that is really appealing to him right now.

Who else wants him: Texas, Ole Miss and Ohio State are among his other offers. Warren is such a big running back that there have been concerns about his college position. He definitely wants to play running back.

9. S Justin Dunning (Whitehouse, Texas/Whitehouse)
6-3, 190
ESPN 300 rank: No. 127.

Why they want him: Size and speed. It was on full display at OU’s satellite camp where Dunning was offered following an impressive outing. OU coaches Mike Stoops and Jay Norvell are trying to quickly turn things around with Dunning regarding OU.

Who else wants him: Right now it’s the state of Texas – literally. Texas, A&M, Texas Tech and Baylor have all made the offers. More will come as his name gets out there more.

10. TE-Y Bobby Evans (Allen, Texas/Allen)
6-3, 240
ESPN 300 rank: No. 210.

Why they want him: Committed. The younger brother of fellow OU commit Tay Evans, his father played basketball for the Sooners. Natural fit. He said he’s 6-5 and 255 and being recruited at offensive tackle at this point.

Who else wants him: Ole Miss and Arizona State tried to make a dent. But once the Sooners made the offer last week, it took less than five minutes for Evans to pledge to Bedenbaugh and give OU its second commitment.