Recruiting Taking a Turn for the Cowboys

Let's start with some recent developments from Thursday. Checking with the coaching staff at Hutchinson (Kan.) C.C., defensive tackle Willie Williams is not going to be able to graduate in May and therefore has been dropped as a commitment by Oklahoma State.

Hutch All-American linebacker David Dixon is also in academic straights as far as graduating and that is why schools have dropped him. He was scheduled to visit Oklahoma State, but never showed up. In a way that is fortunate because he wouldn't have been able to qualify to get in. He is scheduled to visit Kansas State next weekend but I don't see how they will be able to get him in either.

I believe that the situation is very shaky with Jason Cherry. It was former defensive line coach Carey Bailey who was responsible for recruiting Cherry, a late qualifier from the 2004 senior class out of Spanish River High School in Boca Raton, Florida. Cherry was not brought in for spring enrollment as originally planned. Oklahoma State's new staff wanted to further evaluate him and also look at where he fit into needs along with the rest of this recruiting class.

Also, speaking with Gremon Coffman's father Thursday night, he told me that his son, an outstanding safety out of Duncanville, has eliminated Oklahoma State. Once committed to the Cowboys, Coffman visited Texas A&M last weekend, will play in the Dallas area Coca-Cola All-Star Game this weekend, and will visit OU next weekend.

So now the commitments and junior college signees for Oklahoma State add up to 18 again. Of those several are very shaky, including offensive lineman Chris Hall, who is visiting Arkansas and Texas this weekend; offensive lineman Marlon Winn, who visited Texas Tech and is deciding between the Cowboys and the Red Raiders; and offensive lineman Noah Franklin, who is visiting Arkansas this weekend.

That could leave the Cowboys in the hunt for some more offensive linemen as well as the defensive linemen that they are already trying to obtain.

The class right now contains 12 solid commitments or signees and is broken down like this: one offensive lineman (Brady Bond), one wide receiver (Tevin Williams), one running back (Kevin White), one kicker (Matt Fodge), two defensive linemen (Josh Pinaire and Ryan McBean), one linebacker (Eric Preast), three cornerbacks (T.J. Bell, Quinton Moore and Ricky Price), and two safeties (Brent Nickerson and Andre Sexton).

The major needs would be offensive linemen, if the Cowboys lose any of the three soft commitments; wide receiver, one running back, more defensive linemen, and linebackers.

The visit lists for the next two weekends will be very interesting to try and track down. Expect an influence from new coaches like Curtis Luper and Doug Meacham in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, Gunter Brewer on the East Coast, Larry Fedora and Joe Wickline in Florida and the Southeast, and Nelson Barnes in Texas and Midwest.

The biggest surprises could come from an expected source as now associate head coach Joe DeForest was back in Houston this week working the schools hard. Head coach Mike Gundy will be on a popular sports radio show in the morning in the Houston area and will likely spend time down in Houston next week. The talk is that OSU has made some inroads with some talented players in that area.

Key names that are still in the running and could be difference makers in the class include Dallas Kimball defensive tackle DeMarcus Granger, Houston Westside standout R.J. Jackson, Denton Ryan safety Ishie Odeuwga and McKinney defensive tackle Lorenzo Jones. Those are all Texas players and Gundy was in the homes of Granger, Odeuwga and Jones this past week. He visited with Odeuwga Thursday in hopes of halting a scheduled trip this weekend to LSU. Denton Ryan head coach Joey Florence may nix that trip himself because of disappointment over the handling of former Ryan wide receiver Phillip Jones when he was at OSU.

News may be sketchy on recruiting over the final week and a half. We will do our best, but our advice is treat this signing day like Christmas morning and just wait and see what the Signing Day Santa has for the Cowboys when he slides through the fax machine Feb. 2 in the OSU football office.

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