Recruiting: Protection Week and A Few Targets

What has been one of the easier recruiting seasons to cover until now has become a pursuit of unanswered phone calls and simply trying to track where Oklahoma State coaches are as they go in homes for the final time. The Cowboy coaching staff is attempting to protect verbal commitments and pursuing a handful of players that are left uncommitted with national signing day a week away.

For instance, on Tuesday night we know Cowboy head coach Mike Gundy and assistant Gunter Brewer flew from the Houston area back to Oklahoma to go in for what may have been a marathon session with Ryan Broyles and his parents. Curtis Luper was in Cedar Hill and Dallas to meet with William Cole and Christian Scott, respectively. Joe DeForest was in the Houston area, Joe Wickline in Tyler, and Doug Meacham was in Killeen to see longtime commitment Jonathan Rush.

It will be that way every night this week as the coaching staff will crisscross the nation and hit virtually all the committed players. Other than Broyles, who is in the middle of a Bedlam recruiting battle that pits brother against brother and has become a media circus, it appears the other commitments are holding firm and there are now less than four days left before the quiet and then the dead period begin.

It appears there will be no visitors coming to Stillwater this weekend for the final visit weekend. It's a good thing as the weather has turned lousy again. The Cowboys look like they will fill up without needing any last minute visitors. That is a good thing and something that hasn't always happened. We know the visit weekend is off because through our contacts we have learned some of the catering and events have been canceled.

Now very simply here is the way we feel the class will conclude (based on conversations with prospects, family members or their high school coaches).

Count all the commitments currently except for Broyles. We have left him on the OSU list for now based on knowing that last night he had not made a firm decision. It will be tough to hang on to the All-State cornerback and receiver but believe me there are several key aspects in the Cowboys favor. However, the majority and the outside pressure favors Oklahoma.

Here are the possible additions before signing day:

William Cole: The standout athlete from Texas Class 5A champ Cedar Hill is now leaning toward staying home this weekend. His coach at Cedar Hill, Joey McGuire, told us that Cole has a good idea of where he is going to go. He just isn't telling anyone, including family members. We found out some key information that we cannot reveal that Oklahoma State is solidly in the mix. He had a great visit to Stillwater last weekend and if Cole stays home this weekend it will be either OSU, Arkansas or Kansas. OSU has the advantage in proximity and the new facilities, and upward movement of the program are advantages as well. If he visits, McGuire said OU, Texas A&M, and Arizona are the possibilities. The announcement is scheduled to be made on KDFW-TV Channel 4 (Fox) in Dallas on Sunday night's 10 p.m. sports show.

Christian Scott: I have to admit I was wrong on this one. I didn't give the Cowboys a big shot here, but never underestimate the power of Curtis Luper as a recruiter and the help of Cowboy defensive end commitment Richetti Jones as an assistant. Scott is live on five schools. Texas and Texas A&M have both been in this week. OSU (Luper) and LSU (Les Miles) were in Tuesday night and tonight Bob Stoops takes his final shot. Amazing that all those head coaches waited until the end of this one. Again, don't underestimate Luper. He has made a solid connection with Scott through hard work and persistence. The 6-1, 185-pound safety would be a huge signee in helping solidify the future of the secondary. Scott has said after the Stoops visit tonight he will take his time this weekend and has said Super Bowl Sunday, like Cole, is his target for an announcement. A week ago I would have said no way, but based on what I am hearing out of Skyline High School it could happen.

Gerald Jones: I know the Millwood High School superstar has been the favorite rumor for a while, but I have inquired at Millwood and the belief is that he will stay with Tennessee. OSU and Texas Tech have stayed on him all the way, but I believe he will stick with Tennessee as well.

Darnius Moore: The Tatum , Texas wide receiver is so quiet and says so little that it is very hard to get any kind of read. It is down to OSU, OU and Tennessee. The loser of the Broyles tug of war could have an advantage here. My guess is we will know something this weekend. We also don't know what the schedule has been with the final in-home visits in his house this week. Anything I guess here would be just that, a pure guess. I do think OSU and OU have the edge because of proximity.

Co-Eric Riley : Okay, he visited and is still a commitment to Mississippi State, He has gone silent and is not answering his phone. My guess is that there will be no announcement and just a signing next Wednesday. You have to understand that signing day for most junior college players is like a divorced person getting re-married -- there's no shower, no reception, no gifts, just say "I do" and move on with it.

Surprise Signee: I don't think there will be one, and besides if the Cowboys get two of the players above, even if they lose Broyles, then they hit the target. Another offensive lineman or a junior college defensive tackle would be nice additions but I don't think there are any left on the OSU board.

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