Alexander finds home in Sooners

NORMAN, Okla. — A lot of Sooner Nation has been calling for OU to place a heavier emphasis on winning the major in-state battles, and it scored another major win in that department Monday, securing a verbal commitment from Booker T. Washington safety Dominique Alexander.

Alexander, a three-star defensive back who de-committed from the Arkansas Razorbacks earlier in the day, quickly shifted his sights to the Crimson and Cream without even a 24-hour window.

"My thought process is it's a great feeling to be committed to the University of Oklahoma," Alexander told Sooners Illustrated Monday evening. "You know, just being committed to a school that's always gonna have a chance to contend for the national championship, it's a great feeling going to a school that's always going to be one of the best. And I kinda knew what I wanted to do for a while now, so everything is good."

Alexander becomes the fifth state of Oklahoma commit for this 2013 class, joining cornerback Stanvon Taylor, defensive end D.J. Ward, offensive tackle Dalton Rodriguez and wide receiver Jordan Smallwood.

"Well, it's a great feeling, you know," Alexander said. "But I felt like once you get in, whatever they say, they're giving us the opportunity to come like show out and we gotta just put on when we get there. We gotta show up. Like the give us the opportunity, so we gotta make sure that we ball out when we get there just to show everybody that they should be, like Oklahoma should be getting everybody, the best players from Oklahoma that are going around to the other states when really good players are here.

"So, they're giving us the opportunity, so now we that we get that, we just gotta go ball out. Me and Stanvon [Taylor], we talk every day and we say that same thing to each other. ‘Like when we get there, we have to show out now.'"

Overall, Alexander becomes the class' 12 commit, giving OU a nearly 50 percent ratio in their class from in-state and out-of-state verbals.

He's the fourth defensive back pledge out of a class in which defensive coordinator Mike Stoops hopes to lock up at least five, and Alexander is the eighth overall defensive commit.

The 6-foot, 190-pounder committed to Arkansas back in June, but he said the uncertainty there with the coaching situation was alarming, plus the fact of playing for a historic in-state power helped trigger his decision.

"Well, growing up in Oklahoma knowing about the program, just knowing that they've always been dominant and to get a chance to play for Oklahoma obviously means that you're a really good player," Alexander said. "And so, you know, when they offered me just that played a role into everything. Just like I went to the University of Oklahoma and everybody around you is probably Oklahoma friends.

"And not saying I'm going for the people or anything because I'm definitely going for myself, but it's great to have support, just them being able to dominant and just being able to go to such a dominant school and such a powerhouse. That played a major role in the decision."

So, too, did his potential position coach.

While he's projected at safety, there's discussion of the Sooners using him as a linebacker.

That's where Sooner linebackers coach Tim Kish's impact comes to the table.

"Oh, that relationship, it helped a lot because being cool with the person I'm playing for, that [is important]," Alexander said. "I've never had a problem talking to Coach Kish. Like some college coaches that recruit me I don't want to talk to them, but when Coach Kish [calls], I always want to talk to him. And like also with Coach Shipp, too, Coach Jackie Shipp."

With respect to where he'll actually play in college, there seems to be some debate from his future coaches.

"And as far as where they're gonna use me, they don't know yet," Alexander said. "They like offered me as an athlete, but when I talked to Coach Stoops today, Coach Bob Stoops, he said that Coach Kish wants me at linebacker and Coach Mike Stoops wants me at safety or nickel back or whatever. So really it's just up in the air."

What is not up in the air is the solidity of this commitment.

He's just ready to don the OU uniform and get to work.

"Yeah, I'm just like, ‘Plug me in where you need me,'" Alexander said. "Because when I was on the phone with Coach Stoops today, with Coach Bob Stoops today, he was explaining to me a guy that he had a while back, Dan Cody. They were recruiting him the same way, like they just didn't know where they were gonna play him, and then he ended up being an All-American."

The Sooners will take all those they can get, especially in play-making positions.

As for the rest of Alexander's senior season, his 6-4 Hornets are set for a huge playoff game at 8-2 Jenks to open up postseason play.

"I'm looking forward to it," Alexander said. "I love playing against the best. There will be a lot of competition out there as far as my future teammate, Jordan Smallwood, Trey'Vonnne Barr'e. It's gonna be a lot of competition. I've played against them for four years now, and I want to finally get a win. So, I'm looking forward to it."

The Hornets, who won 5A state titles in 2008 and '10 before moving up to Class 6A this season, were the last team to win at Hunter-Dwelley Stadium.

That came back in 2006, and they'll look to do it again if they hope to extend their season.

--Josh Helmer contributed to this report--

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