Friday, February 24, 2012
Offer update: OU offers seven receivers
By Bob Przybylo
The Sooners extended several new offers to 2013 prospects this week. Bob Przybylo breaks down the most recent Oklahoma offers by position:
• Wide receiver isn’t looking like a major position of need for Oklahoma’s 2013 class but that hasn't stopped OU wide receivers coach Jay Norvell from offering several top wide outs from across the country. Through Twitter.
Tom Hauck for ESPN.com
Junior receiver Uriah LeMay has expressed interest in the Sooners.
Norvell publicly tweeted offers to six top receivers Tuesday morning. After realizing that the information he tweeted was public, they were quickly deleted. The damage, however, had already been done.
Coaches are allowed to tweet, obviously, but they are not allowed to tweet directly and publicly at prospective recruits and that’s exactly what Norvell did with Ra’Shaad Samples (Dallas/Skyline), Ricky Seals-Jones (Sealy, Texas/Sealy), James Quick (Louisville, Ky./Trinity), Demarcus Robinson (Fort Valley, Ga./Peach County), Ahmad Fulwood (Jacksonville, Fla./Bishop Kenny) and Uriah LeMay (Matthews, N.C./Butler).
Recruits like Seals-Jones, Samples and LeMay have been talked about for a long time as being close to having OU offers. LeMay was rumored to have an OU offer in the fall but said it wasn’t official at the time.
The timing was a little peculiar with Seals-Jones as he was deciding between Texas and LSU on Wednesday afternoon. The ESPNU 150 Watch List receiver chose the Longhorns.
Initially, most thought Norvell’s account was hacked until one-by-one, the receivers started to confirm the offers after having spoken with OU assistant coaches.
The Sooners also offered Jordan Cunningham (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./University School) on Tuesday. But since he doesn’t have a Twitter account, that offer didn’t get near the attention of the aforementioned six.
• It was apparent which coaches were busy this week. Norvell offered seven wide receivers, while first-year linebackers coach Tim Kish hit the circuit with at least five known offers.
When Kish took over, most figured Arizona and California would open up for the Sooners. Through the first month of recruiting, that has been the case.
However, Kish is also an Ohio guy and this week those Midwestern roots start to grow as three of the six linebackers offered were from his former neck of the woods.
The Sooners reached out to Courtney Love (Youngstown, Ohio/Cardinal Mooney), Shane Jones (Cincinnati/Moeller) and Alex Anzalone (Exeter, Pa./Wyoming Area). Love is actually from the same high school that Bob and Mike Stoops graduated from.
Anzalone is an ESPNU 150 Watch List member, while Jones and Love have both seen their interest pick up in the last month.
Linebacker Jaylon Smith is one of the top prospects in the country.
The Sooners also have entered the sweepstakes for Jaylon Smith (Fort Wayne, Ind./Bishop Luers). At 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, Smith is one of the most coveted linebackers in the nation. And based on film and combine performances, it is easy to see why.
OU also went back to North Carolina and offered LeMay’s teammate Peter Kalambayi on Wednesday. Kalambayi has more than 20 offers and is 6-foot-2 and 230 pounds.
In OU’s traditional recruiting grounds, the Sooners have gone after Deon Hollins Jr. (Fort Bend, Texas/Marshall). Hollins has around 20 offers as well but will attend Texas’ junior day Saturday and could be one of those commits on the spot type of players.
• As OU continues to roll out the offers at running back, it is becoming clear that this will be at least a two-running back class. And right now the Sooners are in good position with multiple top backs.
One where OU will have some ground to make up is Ty Isaac (Joliet, Ill./Catholic). At 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, there aren’t many bigger and stronger backs in the nation.
Isaac holds offers from just about every major program. The key for OU will be to get Isaac on campus, but there is no telling at this point how realistic an opportunity that will be.
Not much was known about Adam Taylor (Katy, Texas/Katy) because of a torn ACL last season, but the Sooners are confident enough that he’ll be back to full strength and extended an offer to him on Wednesday.
Katy coach Gary Joseph couldn’t say enough great things about Taylor, saying he is a natural leader and is his own worst critic that is always striving to get better. Taylor played in one game in 2011 before tearing his ACL.
• Texas’ junior day will be a good gauge for a couple of defensive backs as both Antwuan Davis (Bastrop, Texas/Bastrop) and Maurice Smith (Sugar Land, Texas/Dulles) have OU offers but will be in Austin this weekend.
Smith has openly admitted that Texas is his dream school, while the vibe has been the same regarding Davis. They’re arguably the two best cornerbacks in the state of Texas for the 2013 class.
OU once again hit the teammate route this time going to Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., for defensive backs Chris Hawkins and Tahaan Goodman. Hawkins is a natural corner, while Goodman is a tweener that could play safety or corner. Both are ESPNU 150 Watch List members.
The ESPNU 150 Watch List member hunt continued Thursday as OU offered safety Max Redfield (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo) and cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III (Tampa, Fla./Wharton).
Redfield is 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds, while Hargreaves is 5-foot-11 and 181 pounds. While OU is sending out offers left and right to defensive backs in California, Hargreaves is the first Florida corner to be offered. OU has already offered safety Leon McQuay (Seffner, Fla./Armwood).
• Defensive end saw a couple of additions. OU defensive ends coach Bobby Jack Wright has been extremely busy on that front. Offers were extended to Greg Gilmore (Hope Mills, N.C./South View) and Matt Dimon (Katy, Texas/Katy).
Gilmore, 6-foot-3 and 285 pounds, is another one of those national prospects that OU is just trying to make sure it is in the conversation. Dimon, however, could be a serious candidate for a commitment.
Oklahoma offered class of 2013 offensive tackle Ethan Pocic this week.
At 6-foot-2 and 235 pounds, Dimon had OU as one of his favorites before this week’s offer. Now that the Sooners have offered, he will be somebody worth watching. He’ll also be at OU’s junior day next weekend. Joseph said Dimon is starting to earn a lot more interest as Arkansas and Missouri are two notable schools to offer Dimon in the last week.
• It wasn’t a busy week on the offensive line, but when you’re one offer is Ethan Pocic (Lemont, Ill./Lemont), that’s OK.
Pocic, 6-foot-6 and 290 pounds, is going to be regarded as one of the nation’s best prospects at offensive tackle. Pocic, however, will be tough to read as he is a naturally quiet kid that doesn’t open up all that often.
• A minor surprise this week was offensive tackle J.J. Gustafson (Dallas/Jesuit) committing to Texas A&M on Monday morning. Gustafson had said OU was in his top five.
Based on what Gustafson had said in the past, most felt he was going to wait longer before making his decision. However, College Station felt like home for Gustafson, and he pulled the trigger.
Seals-Jones wasn’t the only receiver to commit as Rodney Adams (St. Petersburg, Fla./Lakewood) committed to Florida at the Gators’ second junior day Saturday.