OU's offensive 'wish list'

Halfway through the recruiting calendar, who are some of the names still alive on OU's board for offensive recruits?

The first Monday of each month Sooners Illustrated is going to examine the recruiting situation for Oklahoma's offensive positions.

Here is an idea of where OU stands heading into August. The number in parentheses indicates the number of recruits OU is looking to sign at the position for the Class of 2014. The names in no way reflect OU's official board but are the best guesstimate of who OU is targeting.

QB (1)

Committed (1): Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe's Justice Hansen. This about as easy as it gets for the recruiting class. OU quarterbacks coach Josh Heupel targeted Hansen, made the offer and Hansen committed at the spring game. There is no drama here. The Sooners have their man.

RB (2)

Committed (1): Pflugerville (Texas) Hendrickson's Samaje Perine. OU made a huge push for Perine in the spring and locked up his commitment early. Built like a fullback, the plan is for Perine to play running back. Good luck trying to take him down.

Favorite: Oakley (Calif.) Freedom's Joe Mixon. OU is going to get an official visit from Mixon on Oct. 4, the weekend of the TCU game. Mixon has sort of crept up the OU rankings, and it doesn't hurt that his favorite running back is former OU star Adrian Peterson.

Next in line: Cherry Creek (Colo.) Englewood's Nathan Starks. Not much has been heard from Starks since leaving Las Vegas Bishop Gorman. He has quietly gone about his business. The Sooners haven't given up on Starks at all as OU running backs coach Cale Gundy has developed a strong relationship.

On the radar: North Richland Hills (Texas) Birdville's Xavier Turner. A frequent visitor to OU, it feels like Turner won't be able to control his own destiny with the Sooners. If OU can land either Mixon or Starks, Turner will have to find a home somewhere else.

FB (1)

Committed: None.

Favorite: Richardson (Texas) High's Kendrick Igbinoba. A strong showing at OU's satellite camp has him poised to be the next fullback for the Sooners. OU coaches still want to see how he does blocking so nothing will happen until further down the road.

Next in line: Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe's Michael Farmer. Transferring to Edmond Santa Fe should help Farmer receive more looks from schools. Recovering from a torn ACL, the question is will Farmer end up at fullback or as an outside linebacker?

On the radar: Tulsa (Okla.) Memorial's MikeQuan Deane. OU will go the patient route with Deane. It has other options and there are some academic concerns heading into his senior season. Deane fared very well at OU's camp in June.

WR (3-4)

Committed (3): La Mirada (Calif.) High's Dallis Todd. There are going to be constant rumors about Todd because he's such a lucrative prospect, but he has shut them down every time. Committed in April, he has a great relationship with Hansen and is also taking his official visit Oct. 4.

Tulsa (Okla.) Union's Jeffery Mead. Nobody knew who he was at this time last year, but it became apparent OU wide receivers coach Jay Norvell wasn't going to let this in-state star get away. Committed in late June, this feels solid because of his family's love of OU and Mead's relationship with Norvell.

Scottsdale (Ariz.) Desert Mountain's Mark Andrews. The latest commit as Andrews pledged Friday afternoon. He grew up an OU fan, his brother attends medical school at OU, the pieces fit into place for this one. He is a receiver and not a tight end so locks up another tall target.

Favorite: Mount Pleasant (Texas) High's K.D. Cannon. OU doesn't need another receiver, but Norvell isn't going to pass on Cannon. He put OU in his top five last week, and the Sooners should make any additional list going forward. Still, it's going to be a long road to get Cannon from Baylor or Texas Tech.

Next in line: Houston Alief Taylor's Keenen Brown. Two months ago this might have been a commitment. But Brown still hasn't seen the campus and there's no telling if OU has room for Brown at this point. Other schools are chiming in, and he might have to look elsewhere. He will finally visit Saturday.

On the radar: None. Norvell has done his job. Cannon or bust at this point.

TE (2)

Committed (1): Tulsa (Okla.) Union's Carson Meier. It happened fast between OU and Meier in May. OU tight ends coach Jay Boulware liked what he saw from Meier and wasted no time. Meier isn't being asked to bulk up so it looks like he will be a flexed out tight end for OU.

Favorite: None. There are quality options but none that are clear cut the guy Boulware is targeting.

Next in line: Berryhill (Okla.) High's Jeremy Smith. Performed well at OU's camp and already has several quality offers. OU has not extended an offer.

On the radar: Jean Sifrin. Juco prospect who should visit OU this month. Not a lot known at this point although USC and Kansas have both shown interest.

Norman (Okla.) North's Payton Prince. Committed to Tulsa, but OU could revisit Prince during the season. Prince has turned the corner with his mentality and his conditioning. Has great hands and also looked solid at OU's camp in June.

OG/C (2)

Committed (1): Troy (Ohio) High's Alex Dalton. Offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh loved him when he coached at West Virginia. When Bedenbaugh moved to OU, went straight for Dalton. Committed in May, there are no doubts about where he stands.

Favorite: Phoenix Mountain Pointe's Natrell Curtis. Mentioned OU being one of his top five earlier this summer but hasn't seen the campus yet. Things could get real interesting if he were to visit.

Next in line: Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco's Damien Mama. A lot of package deals have included Mama, but it's still not crystal clear how much legit OU interest he has.

On the radar: None. Right now no names stand out. That will change as the season progresses, but Bedenbaugh hasn't sought out too many interior linemen yet.

OT (3)

Committed: None. And that's a problem. OU has come so close yet so far with a few tackle prospects. It's back to the drawing board for the Sooners.

Favorite: None. Just like at tight end, there are names to watch but none that you can point to and say that's the guy.

Next in line: Garden City (Kan.) juco prospect Dontavius Blair. He visited OU in the spring, but he has visited a lot of other schools, too. Sought after by many, the Sooners haven't shown as much interest lately. That could and should change.

On the radar: Snow College (Utah) juco prospect Patrick Au. This is the opposite of most tackle prospects. Au has expressed a sincere desire to commit to the Sooners. Right now, though, there is something keeping this from becoming a reality.

Special teams

K/P (1)

Committed: None.

Favorite: None. OU offered one kicker, but it didn't pan out. This won't be a huge concern at this point. The Sooners have had luck finding kickers late in the game before so a name should emerge down the road.

Summary: With so many lingering questions at offensive line, this will be a busy fall for Bedenbaugh. OU saw a lot of its top tackle targets commit elsewhere in the last month so new names are going to emerge. The Sooners, for the most part, are sitting pretty with skill position recruits.

Sooners Illustrated Top Stories