Huge Recruiting Weekend For Cowboys

The 2010 season was a season that included record-setting performances from a number of players, including Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon. Now with the momentum of this week's announcement that Blackmon and Weeden are returning for another season, the Cowboys open 2011 with a first in bringing in a record-setting number of official visitors this weekend.

In our more than 29-plus years of covering football recruiting with a keen eye on Oklahoma State we have never seen a weekend with 20 official visitors expected. The top number we can remember was in the 2009 class with a weekend where there were 16 visitors.

It's a huge number but what appears to make it work is that it is loaded with players that are committed and many of them have been committed to Oklahoma State for a long time.

Recruiting is a people skill activity and one that can ride on emotions. With that many recruits on hand and strongly committed to Oklahoma State, the overwelming emotions will be very positive and could easily have a strong impact on the five uncommitted prospects that are visiting.

Top that off with the fact that two of the 2011 high school recruits are already enrolled. Denton Guyer quarterback J.W. Walsh and Plano West offensive lineman Travis Cross began classes at Oklahoma State this week and they will be hosting and part of the weekend. Those two, besides being enthusiastic members of the recruiting class, bring the added excitement of already being students on campus.

You also have the factor of the parents making the trip, and again, with so many committed there will be a strong positive Oklahoma State feeling among the parents.

The drawback is that perhaps you have too many prospects and they could feel slighted by not getting enough attention from the coaches or head coach Mike Gundy. That is where Gundy and his staff will have to work hard, move around the room a lot at activities, and do the best to stay on schedule.

Offensive line coach Joe Wickline talked about dealing with the big number of visitors.

"It's not hard and it kind of reminds me of the old days when you brought in 15 guys in or 16 guys in every weekend. It seems like that was the way it was until all of the early commitments," said Wickline.

"Coach Gundy structures it now to where all of our guys that have been committed for awhile, and some of the guys that aren't committed, (come in together) and it's a good thing because the parents have a lot in common and the kids have a lot in common. Ninety percent of them will be able to talk about roommates and talk about where they are going to sit during the games.

"They will be able to talk about things that are critical to the next four or five years in the life and won't be talking about that I'm going to this place next week or I don't know what I'm going to do yet. Most of them pretty much know what they are going to do and they also help recruit the ones that don't know what they are going to do, so it is a really good thing for us," added Wickline.

Support staff like Johnny Barr, Scott Yielding and Dale Patterson have critical roles in keeping everybody happy and the weekend moving. The current player hosts and Orange Pride hosts also play a huge role especially when there are so many visitors.

With no home athletic contests this weekend, there is plenty of time for tours of facilities and to visit with academic staff. The player hosts will get plenty of free time to show the prospects around campus and Stillwater.

As far as movement this weekend, all of the committed visitors appear to be firmly committed. Of the uncommitted prospects visiting the most likely to commit might be ultra-talented linebacker Ryan Simmons of Texas 5A Division II state champion Cibolo Steele. Simmons seems to be making the trip really favoring OSU and anxious to get a look at the school.

Brandon Alexander looks like he might be deciding between Texas A&M and the others recruiting him. Donte Moncrief still has a visit to Mississippi next week and West Virginia at the end of the month and we would be surprised if he didn't make at least the Ole Miss visit.

Alex Villareal and DeAndre Washington are both committed to Houston and Texas Tech, respectively, and will size up OSU next to those schools.

Below is a list of the prospects that are expected to visit OSU this weekend and a brief note on each:

Committed (15)
Jimmy Bean, DE, 6-5, 220, 4.6, Denton (Guyer), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Helped Guyer to the state championship game with 78 tackles and 2.5 sacks.

Devin Davis, OL. 6-5, 249, 5.0, Nacogdoches, Texas - Visiting 1/14
Very athletic offensive line prospect that was a repeat on 1st Team All District 4A-14.

Alex Elkins, LB, 6-4, 235, 4.55, Keller, Texas/Blinn (Texas) College - Visiting 1/14
Didin't play football until junior college, but his speed has made him a defensive and special teams standout.

David Glidden, WR (Inside), 5-10, 175, 4.41, Mustang, Okla. - Visiting 1/14
Two-time All-Stater with over 2,800 yards receiving in his career.

Matt Green, P/K, 6-2, 230, 4.8, Lexington (Lafayette), Ky. - Visiting 1/14
Rated in the top 10 among high school kickers from kicking guru Chris Sailer.

Jonovan Griffin, QB/Ath., 6-0, 175, 4.45, McKinney (Boyd), Texas - Visiting 1/14
The District MVP and 1st Team QB in 5A-10 in Texas.

Lyndell Johnson, Star/S, 6-3, 190, 4.45, Plano (East), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Huge safety that earned 1st Team All District 5A-8.

Miketavius Jones, CB, 5-10 1/2, 170, 4.5, Galena Park (North Shore), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Considered the top true cover corner prospect in the Houston area and an All Greater Houston selection.

Isaac McCoy, WR, 6-0, 170, 4.45, Alma, Ark. - Visiting 1/14
Recent speedster that committed to OSU and scored 32 TDs and was finalist for 5A Player of the Year.

Ashaad Mabry, DT, 6-3, 286, 5.3, San Antonio (MacArthur), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Helped MacArthur to 5A quarterfinals with 75 tackles and 3 sacks, All Metro in San Antonio.

Isaac Maselera, DB, 5-11, 185, 4.6, Glenpool,. Okla. - Visiting 1/14
Preseason All-State but suffered through an injury plagued season, excellent athlete.

Nico Ornelas, LB, 6-3, 200, 4.56, Richland, Texas - Visiting 1/14
Prolific tackler was 1st Team All 5A-6.

Desmond Roland II, WR/RB, 6-2,204, 4.5, Dallas (Lake Highlands), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Rushed for more than 1,300 yards and was MVP in District 5A-9.

Demarcus Sherod, LB, 6-2 1/2, 220, 4.7, Decatur (Columbia), Ga. - Visiting 1/14
With 138 tackles on the season earned all-county and All-State honors.

Josh Stewart, WR/CB, 5-10, 175, 4.5, Denton (Guyer), Texas - Visiting 1/14
Earned All District honors on offense and defense with 971-yards and 10 TDs receiving and 7 interceptions.

Uncommitted (5)
Brandon Alexander, DE, 6-6, 240, 4.7, Brenham, Texas - Visiting 1/14, also considering Baylor, Florida, Kansas, Texas A&M (12/10), Texas Tech
Cousin of former OU standout Rufus Alexander, he had over 80 tackles in earning All District 4A-17.

Donte Moncrief, WR, 6-3, 202, 4.48, Raleigh, Miss. - Visiting 1/14, also verbally committed to Mississippi (1/21), West Virginia (1/28) Did it all rushing, receiving, and passing and combined for 13 TDs.

Ryan Simmons, LB, 6-1, 218, 4.75, Cibolo (Steele), Texas - Visiting 1/14, also considering Oregon, Stanford, Wake Forest (10/9)
Maybe, pound for pound, the best defensive player in Texas, he was hero with interception in state championship win.

Alex Villareal, DT, 6-4, 295, 5.0, Hidalgo, Texas - Visiting 1/14, also verbally committed to Houston (12/10)
He earned 1st Team All District 5A-32 honors this season.

DeAndre Washington, RB, 5-11, 180, 4.45, Missouri City (Marshall), Texas - Visiting 1/14, also verbally committed to Texas Tech (1/21)
Very talented running back that has been compared to Kendall Hunter and earned All District 5A-23 honors.

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