You'd think that a young man in Oklahoma that has an offer from the Sooners would have his sights set firmly on a future in Norman. You'd also think that in the Sooner-state, no highly recruited athlete would find more attention from anywhere but the in-state power itself.
For one of the more touted recruits to come out of Oklahoma neither happens to be the case right now as Dillard is getting the brunt of recruiting attention from one school, hence it's the school that he is chalking up as his leader right now. "The attention from Nebraska is pretty crazy." Phillip said. "All the letters and everything, they are easily the team recruiting me the hardest."
Spearheading that recruiting effort is the former head coach for the Oklahoma Sooners and current defensive line coach for Nebraska, John Blake. The connection to Norman, however, has not come up according to Dillard. "We don't talk about Oklahoma." he said. "We just talk about life and what's going on at Nebraska with all the changes on offense, defense and all the new facilities they are putting in."
Adding to the coach's recruiting efforts, Dillard is also hearing from another with Oklahoma ties. Recent NU commit, Craig Roark said in a video interview with BigRed Report that he would be doing a little recruiting his own, concentrating much of his attention on in-state prospects, starting first with Dillard.
Phillip said that he has already heard from the Ada, Oklahoma standout and while he state that Roark's input about the program wouldn't make that much of a difference, what he did like was how Roark delivered the sales pitch. "He was just so excited about his commitment there." Dillard stated. "You have to like it when someone is so excited about their decision. That's how I would like to be when I decide where I want to go."
Despite what Dillard has been told of NU by both Blake and Roark, there's still no substitute for checking it yourself. To that end Dillard plans on doing just that before the end of this month. On the weekend of the 25th Phillip plans on seeing everything first hand. "It's important to see everything for myself." Phillip said. "That way I can check it all out and learn about the things that I care about the most."
With the impending trip to visit his current favorite, some Husker fans might hope that the recruiting momentum continues bringing yet another early commitment to NU. Phillip said that as of right now, that wasn't the plan, Dillard still planning on waiting some time before he makes his final choice. "Right now, I am thinking mid-season or afterwards." he said. "Nothing is for sure, but that's just what I am thinking right now."
There are a variety of names that come out of Oklahoma year in and year out as to top football players in the country. This year is no different as off the top of your head you can think of Dillard, Craig Roark, Reggie Smith and Curtis Lofton as being some of the best.
Husker fans are starting to feel that momentum and even in the Sooner-state they wonder if they can get one more and if they can get that, maybe more. In that aforementioned video interview, Roark said that he was hoping to get Dillard and then both Oklahoma standouts can go after one other, that being the "super-freak", Safety, Reggie Smith.
That's a long ways away though, but as Keith Jackson likes to say, "Old Mo" is with the Huskers and fans of Nebraska so used to thinking "if" when it came to pulling in some of the biggest names in the country are now instead wondering "when".
Steve Ryan can be reached at SteveRyan@bigredreport.com or 402-730-5619