Oklahoma Sooners: Will Sunderland

Today is a minor holiday for recruitniks: The newest edition of the ESPN 300 recruiting rankings have been released, along with a slew of other grades and evaluations.

It's always a big-time endeavor for the ESPN crew of scouts, so be sure to click HERE for the ESPN 300 rankings.

Several of today's updates to the ESPN 300 affect the Big 12. Here's a closer look at what you should take away from the rankings:
  • Oklahoma State quarterback commit John Kolar enjoyed an incredible jump, going from unranked to the nation's No. 3 pocket passer. He's now ranked No. 82 overall in the ESPN 300. The Norman (Okla.) North senior-to-be impressed filling in for injured Alabama signee David Cornwell last year, and he has wowed our scouts as well.
  • What a killer start for Baylor. The Bears have verbal commitments from six high school prospects, and all six made the ESPN 300. The highest ranked of the bunch is WR John Humphrey Jr., who announced his commitment last night. He's one of three ESPN 300 receivers in the class, joining Devontre Stricklin and Chad President. The Bears signed four ESPN 300 recruits in last year's class, and three the previous year, so this is quite the jump. With Baylor high on the list of several other ESPN 300 prospects, including WR DaMarkus Lodge (No. 63 in ESPN 300) and DE James Lockhart (No. 113), there's a good chance this class ends up being the best in the Big 12 when it's all said and done.
  • Texas now has verbal commitments from five ESPN 300 recruits: S DeShon Elliott (No. 94), OT Toby Weathersby (No. 138), OG Patrick Vahe (No. 171), new RB commit Tristian Houston (No. 208) and RB Jordan Stevenson (No. 296). The Longhorns are in the mix for more than 30 ESPN 300 prospects and have offered several more elite out-of-state recruits. Texas has some real momentum under new coach Charlie Strong at the moment, and it's possible more than 10 uncommitted ESPN 300 prospects visits Austin this week for the spring game.
  • The state of Oklahoma has five prospects in the ESPN 300, and nearly all of them could end up being Sooners. OU already has verbal pledges from DT Marquise Overton (No. 150) and OG Joshua Wariboko (No. 190) and is among the leaders for OG Jalin Barnett (No. 36) and S Will Sunderland Jr. (No. 212). And then there's Kolar, who the Sooners could still make a push for over time. Four of Oklahoma's five current pledges are in the ESPN 300.
  • Texas Tech already has two top-50 recruits in QB Jarrett Stidham and DT Breiden Fehoko, and they'll be the lead recruiters of this Red Raiders class. Stidham checks in at No. 37 in the new ESPN 300, which puts him No. 4 among all prospects in Texas, and Fehoko is the nation's No. 7 defensive tackle.
  • It's a great year to find a running back in the state of Texas. Ten of them made the newest ESPN 300, and six have already committed to schools. The top-rated member of the group is Oklahoma State commit Ronald Jones II, the nation's No. 3 running back. Texas already has Houston and Stevenson, Baylor has Ja'Mycal Hasty (No. 274) and Texas A&M has pledges from Rodney Anderson (No. 263) and Jay Bradford (No. 277).
  • West Virginia is off to a great start with the 2015 class thanks to its dedication to recruiting Florida. Two of its verbal commits made the ESPN 300 in WR Jovon Durante (No. 120) and S Kendrell McFadden (No. 153), and half of its 10 pledges come from the Sunshine State. WVU is one of only seven program in the country with double-digit commitments at this point.

Every Friday, SoonerNation releases the Sooner Intel, a sneak peek inside Oklahoma Sooners football recruiting with news and notes on the latest happenings around the program. Talk about it on our forum. A few things discussed in this week's update:

  • Why the Sooners aren't out of the running for an ESPN 150 wideout."
  • A recruit calls OU "the Alabama of the Big 12."
  • The Sooners are in a great spot for recent junior college visitor.
  • What happens next for OU defensive end/defensive tackle target Brandon Glenn?
  • A Texas DE enjoyed OU's family atmosphere at camp.
  • An OU commit talks about competing in the Sooners' camp.
  • An in-state defensive back is still learning about OU.
  • What happens with the dearth of tight end talent in Oklahoma?

Read the Sooner Intel after the jump.

Q&A: 2015 safety Will Sunderland 

June, 6, 2013
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Midwest City (Okla.) High defensive coordinator Jason Sexton isn’t one for hyperbole. So when he said Class of 2015 safety Will Sunderland would be a name to watch two years ago when he was graduating eighth grade, it resonated.

Sunderland showed flashes of brilliance during his first two years, but something was missing. Most notably some weight. Sunderland has had his 6-foot-3 frame for a while, but he was lacking the muscle mass to go with it.

That has changed dramatically, with Sunderland gaining 15-20 pounds since the end of last season. Now a firm 185 pounds, Sunderland is gaining the notoriety his coach thought would come his way.

Sunderland was arguably the most impressive defensive back at Oklahoma’s camp last weekend, and his performance at the one-day event is starting to open some doors.


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Tales From the road: Oklahoma 

June, 5, 2013
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Every Wednesday the SoonerNation staff will take a quick hit look at some of the top recruits and storylines facing Oklahoma recruiting for the week.


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NORMAN, Okla. -- Oklahoma’s summer camp is always a time when quality prospects solidify their reputations, newcomers emerge and future standouts start making waves with superb performances in front of the Sooners’ coaching staff.

Here are five things we learned from OU’s three-day camp:


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Top performers: Oklahoma camp 

June, 3, 2013
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NORMAN, Okla. -- Some big-time prospects were unable to attend Oklahoma’s camp but that didn’t mean recruits didn’t turn heads and deliver top performances.

Here are the 13 top performers from OU’s 2013 on-campus summer camp:


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NORMAN, Okla. -- If the Saturday sessions of the Oklahoma camp were a bit on the dull side, Day Two made up for that and then some. Sunday is traditionally when the one-day campers step foot on campus and they didn’t disappoint.

Standing out above the rest was Class of 2015 running back Chris Warren III (Rockwall, Texas/Rockwall). Warren was making his second trip to OU this spring. He attended the Sooners' spring game but left at halftime and didn’t get a chance to really talk to the coaches.


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