Sooners ink 24 signees

NORMAN, Okla. — It was a relatively melodramatic day in Sooner land, but effective overall nonetheless.

The Sooners missed out on signatures from three three-stars in offensive tackle George Adeosun, offensive guard Joshua Outlaw and cornerback Adrian Baker.

But they got a huge one, the finalizer in four-star cornerback and Scout 300 member L.J. Moore

However, they didn't lose any commitments to another school and signed all 18 they planned on inking coming into the day.

Five others, including punter Jed Barnett, wide receiver Dannon Cavil, defensive end D.J. Ward, defensive tackle Quincy Russell and safety Ahmad Thomas, signed early and four of them (excluding Russell) are already enrolled.

"It really is [a solid class]," said OU head coach Bob Stoops. "We've got great players really across the board in all positions, positions we needed. But as we recruit through the year as we're always after a little bit of everybody. You know, we need help in all positions. I feel like we got that, in particular in the lines and then a lot of skilled athletes around them."

In all, the Sooners signed nine players on offense and 15 defensive players.

On the offensive side of the ball, the highest ranked player is OU's only five-star, running back Keith Ford.

"Yeah, you know, Keith has great balance as you see great ability to put his foot in the ground and change direction, make people miss him and then outrun them," Stoops said. "He does it all…Here he is down in the top league down there in Texas with almost 1,900 yards, 500 yards receiving, 28 touchdowns, so he's pretty special definitely."

Four-star quarterback Cody Thomas, expected to be a high baseball draft pick as well, is another talented prospect that inked.

"You know what? He's one of the best athletes in the whole class," Stoops said. "That's what you want at quarterback. We're really excited about Cody. Just a great athlete, great poise. You watch him throw it; he can run it. Obviously if you're gonna have a chance to be drafted in baseball, you can run. Exceptional talent. He really is. Everything he does he does it well. Playing other sports he does it well. So, really special guy."

Wide receivers K.J. Young ,Austin Bennett and Jordan Smallwood, plus offensive tackles Christian Daimler and Josiah St. John and offensive guard Dionte Savage round out the offensive side of the ball.

"I felt we got some excellent guys up front on the offensive line," Stoops said. "You know, Dionte you just talked about is a big, strong, physical guy, Dionte Savage. Three-hundred and 30, 35 pounds right now, a huge weight lifter, powerful, strong guy inside. As you watch him, got great ability to move, great strength. So, I believe he's going to help us be more physical in there.

"You know, watching the big man right here, just really powerful, really an excellent young man. Loved having him on campus, really loves to work and he's gonna help us be more physical. The other guys, you know, like I said, we've got Christian Daimler.

Flip to the other side of the ball and the real headliner—along with his teammate, Moore—is Fresno Central High East Campus four-star safety Hatari Byrd.

He's the No. 13 overall safety coming out of the 2013 class.

"Hatari's a great, great safety, a big time DB," Stoops lauded. "He's got great size, range as you watch him. He's a huge hitter, but a great athlete. He can really run and again, got a ton of range to him. He's all of 6-1. I think he's closer to 6-2 to be honest with you, around 200 pounds and, again, an excellent skilled athlete."

But they signed a couple other defensive backs on this day, including cornerbacks Stanvon Taylor and Dakota Austin, making for five total defensive backs when including early enrollee Thomas.

Despite losing longtime commit Jordan Mastrogiovanni to Texas A&M a few weeks ago, the Sooners landed a pair of very good linebackers in local Norman North product Jordan Evans and in-state Tulsa area native Dominique Alexander.

Up front they addressed their needs as well with three more defensive tackle signees, including four-star Kerrick Huggins and three-stars Charles Walker and Matthew Romar in addition to defensive ends Matt Dimon and Ogbonnia Okoronwu.

"In the defensive line I felt like we got a lot of good D-line and D-ends, guys that will help us help improve our interior, hopefully, D-line and some good rush guys outside," Stoops said.

After claiming Moore late in the day, the Sooners finish with a healthy 24 signees and 15th in the final FOX Sports NEXT recruiting rankings.

In all, OU inked a five-star, seven four-stars, 14 three-stars and a pair of two-stars.

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