Oklahoma Sooners: Priest Willis

#BlueChipBattles: Nov. 16

November, 16, 2012
Alvin Kamara, Derrick GreenESPN.comUncommitted 2013 running backs Alvin Kamara and Derrick Green.

ESPN 100 running backs Alvin Kamara and Derrick Green can score from anywhere on the field thanks to their breakaway speed, an attribute that makes them very attractive recruits to the Oregon Ducks. Oregon's pursuit of the duo headlines this week’s #BlueChipBattles. Insider

Click through for our list to rank the top 10 recruiting battlesInsider.

#BlueChipBattles: Nov. 9

November, 9, 2012
Max Redfield, Leon McQuayTom Hauck for ESPN.comMax Redfield is out at USC -- is Leon McQuay in?
Think USC was left reeling after Max Redfield (left) decommitted this week? Not really. The Trojans appear to be zeroing in on Leon McQuay III (right). And then there's the nation’s No. 1 recruit, Robert Nkemdiche, who decommitted Thursday. It's an open market in this week’s #BlueChipBattles Insider.

You can also rank the battles this week in SportsNation.

Sooners have options at defensive back 

October, 24, 2012
It didn’t take long for Mike Stoops to return to Oklahoma and target the top defensive backs for the 2013 class. Stoops was aggressive in going after them in the spring and summer and it has paid off now in the fall. The Sooners have three commits in the secondary and have made the final cut for several more.

Coincidentally, a lot of those defensive back targets will be at OU this weekend for the No. 8 Sooners’ contest against fifth-ranked Notre Dame.

[+] EnlargeStanvon Taylor
Bob Przybylo/ESPN.comESPN 300 athlete Stanvon Taylor committed to the Sooners over Kansas State earlier this spring.

Hatari Byrd (Fresno, Calif./Central East, 6-1, 192, No. 14 S): Byrd is making his first visit to OU this weekend. Committed to the Sooners since July 31, he has remained a strong OU commit in interviews and on Twitter. He is incredibly pumped for this weekend.

Stanvon Taylor (Tulsa, Okla./East Central, 5-11, 170, No. 25 ATH): The only question with Taylor is what position will he end up at with OU. Recruited as a cornerback, Taylor has been a star this season at wide receiver. A change in position would also open up another spot in the secondary.

Ahmad Thomas (Miami/Central, 6-0, 195, No. 56 S): Like Byrd, Thomas has not seen the OU campus yet. He was offered in May and took less than two weeks to commit to the Sooners. Thomas is making his official visit to OU on Nov. 23 for Bedlam weekend.


Tyler Foreman (Enicno, Calif./Crespi Carmelite, 6-2, 161, No. 32 S): The Sooners made a strong impression on Foreman during his official visit to OU last month. Mike Stoops also was among the first coaches to take notice in Foreman’s ability. Foreman could still stay in state with California and UCLA very much alive in the process, but the Sooners have done all they can to try to earn his commitment.

Cole Luke (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton, 6-0, 165, No. 33 CB): Arguably the most important official visitor and recruit for the weekend. Not necessarily the biggest and not the highest ranked, but Luke is a priority for the Sooners. He has already taken official visits to Notre Dame and Texas and has said he is choosing among the Sooners, Fighting Irish and Longhorns.

Lamar Robbins (Miami/Southridge, 6-2, 175, No. 69 CB): Robbins is another cornerback making an official visit to OU this weekend. He has been on two official visits and watched Purdue and West Virginia both lose those games. He has been high on OU for a long time but has admitted he needed to see the campus first before he could ever decide anything. Robbins has been attending the visits alone and could be swayed if OU is impressive this weekend.


Adrian Baker (Hollywood, Fla./Chaminade-Madonna, 6-1, 165, No. 18 ATH): Baker made his official visit to OU for this weekend a long time ago. He committed to Florida State after scheduling the visit and said he still wants to see the OU campus. He has weekly talks with Mike Stoops and is being recruited as a cornerback. Clemson also remains in the mix, but Baker is committed to the Seminoles at this point.

L.J. Moore (Fresno, Calif./Central East, 6-0, 164, No. 27 CB): Things have gotten a little muddled between OU and Moore. Expected to take an official visit this weekend, he said he is not sure if he will join Hatari Byrd. Moore has seen the Sooners play once this season, taking an official visit to Texas Tech when OU thrashed the Red Raiders earlier this month. It’s starting to look like OU and Moore might be going their separate ways.


Oklahoma in some #BlueChipBattles

October, 5, 2012
RecruitingNation has summoned its writers from around the country to compile a list of the top 10 battles for elite football recruits leading up to February's signing day.

The Sooners, of course, are in several battles to complete their class. Wide receiver Laquon Treadwell (Crete, Ill./Crete-Monee) plans to visit, and safety Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) has Oklahoma on his list.

Read more about the #BlueChipBattles Insider for the 2013 signing classes.

DB Priest Willis has a top 16 

July, 10, 2012
Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) planned to release a list of his top 15 schools shortly after the opening, but settled on a final 16 when it became too difficult to cut an additional program.

The schools that made the cut for Willis are Arizona, Arizona State, California, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon, UCLA, USC, Utah, Virginia and Washington.

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Video: Four OU offers get ‘Opening’ invites

April, 3, 2012

Upland's (Upland, Calif.) Joe Mathis, Marcos de Niza's (Tempe, Ariz.) Priest Willis, and Rancho Cucamonga's (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) Tahaan Goodman and Chris Hawkins receive invitations to "The Opening" following the Los Angeles NFTC.
Call it a sign of the times. At last weekend’s Nike Football Training Camp event in Irving, Texas, there were a lot of recruits interested in Oklahoma but not necessarily that many prospects that have offers from the Sooners.

Sunday marks the second NFTC event, this time at Cerritos College in Los Angeles. And though it is 1,350 miles to go from Norman, Okla., to Los Angeles, this weekend arguably brings more impact when it comes to the OU recruiting scene.

Here are some prospects to watch:

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Priest Willis open to OU, taking his time 

February, 24, 2012
Defensive back Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) is in no rush to attend junior days or make a college decision.

With the way colleges from across the country are flocking to him, he is justified in taking a calm approach to recruiting.

Willis, 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds, is receiving interest from just about every major program in the nation and has offers from nearly 20 schools.

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Przybylo's Mailbag: Panic button? 

February, 20, 2012
Bob Przybylo answers readers' questions about Oklahoma football and basketball recruiting in his mailbag every Monday. Got a question for Bob? Send it to his mailbag at bprzybyloespn@gmail.com.

Larry in Wichita Falls, Texas, asks: That’s three recruits that picked Texas over OU this last week. What’s going on?

Bob Przybylo: It wasn’t a great week for OU recruiting, but it wasn’t a disaster as some have labeled it. It became clear in the last week or so that OU had fallen off in its quest for dual-threat quarterback Tyrone Swoopes (Whitewright, Texas/Whitewright). He said he liked his OU junior day visit but wasn’t overly impressed. He went to Texas', and the Longhorns closed the deal.

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Offer update: OU looking out west for help 

February, 17, 2012
The Sooners extended several new offers to 2013 prospects this week. Bob Przybylo breaks down the most recent Oklahoma offers by position:

• Former Oklahoma defensive coordinator Brent Venables let it be known that he loved to get his cornerbacks from the Dallas Metroplex area.

Davide De Pas
California cornerback Johnny Johnson Jr. has offers from coast to coast.

With Venables gone, time will tell if OU still pursues the top Dallas-area defensive backs. But with linebackers coach Tim Kish and defensive coordinator Mike Stoops very familiar with the West Coast, it is clear the two are trying to land the top targets out west.

This week’s recruiting was highlighted by OU looking out to Arizona and California to try to find cornerbacks. As of last week, Kendall Fuller (Olney, Md./Good Counsel) was the only cornerback offered.

But that’s not the case anymore. OU offered three cornerbacks recently in Cole Luke (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton), Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) and Johnny Johnson Jr. (Fresno, Calif./Central East).

Johnson was the latest offer, getting the word from the Sooners on Thursday afternoon. It punctuated an exciting week for the 5-foot-10, 175-pound prospect. He was offered by USC at its junior day on Sunday and was also recently been offered by Notre Dame.

Johnson’s athletic ability makes him such an intriguing prospect. With Willis and Luke, it’s a lot more obvious why OU is so interested. Both have the size and physicality of what Stoops likes in his secondary.

Willis is 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds and has offers from USC, Nebraska and Oklahoma State, among numerous others. Luke has thought about the Sooners for a long time and was excited about getting the Sooners offer. He is 6-foot and 165 pounds and has offers from several Pac-12 schools.

• OU is not wasting any time when it comes to defensive ends. The Sooners offered Joe Mathis (Upland, Calif./Upland) late last week and followed that with an offer to Torrodney Prevot (Houston/Alief Taylor) on Thursday.

Mathis has listed OU in his early top five although USC is in the lead. He is going to decide between going to the OU or Nebraska spring game on April 14. We'll be able to find out more regarding OU’s chances with Mathis with that decision.

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Stoops, Players Want To Effect Change
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops sits down with Gene Wojciechowski to discuss his team's stand against racism.