Sooner Intel, Pt. II: OU news and nuggets

In the final Intel of 2013, explore more in-home visits for OU commits as well commitment predictions for the rest of the class.

The Sooner Intel is an inside look into Oklahoma football and basketball recruiting and is solely for Sooners Illustrated subscribers. It is a sneak peek into what's happening with OU recruiting and is not to be distributed anywhere else.

OU sitting pretty with Quick

There's no doubt Fresno (Calif.) Central five-star wide receiver Michiah Quick is among the most sought after recruits in the country. There is also no doubt the Sooners are clearly in the mix and might be the program to beat at this point.

But it's a long way until signing day and that is when Quick is going to announce, said Fresno Central defensive backs coach Tony Perry.

And a switch in the coaching landscape out west has made things even more complicated with Quick and OU.

"He's going to try to see USC," Perry said. "Coach (Steve) Sarkisian was recruiting him hard at Washington. Michiah liked it but said it rains a little too much for him. He has always been cool with Sark."

USC and UCLA should both get visits, unofficial or official, in the new year. Other than that, it does look like it's a two-horse race between OU and Notre Dame. After taking an official visit to Alabama, appears the Crimson Tide isn't a great fit for Quick.

"Alabama wanted him to play on just one side of the ball," Perry said. "It was a good visit, but I'm not sure that's what he's looking to do."

So what is he looking to do? The plan has been laid out by OU and UCLA who both said he can play wide receiver and also play some defensive back like in nickel and dime packages. All Quick really wants is the most chances possible to make the most amount of plays.

"He wants to play offense, No. 1," Perry said. "He wouldn't mind playing defense, but he definitely wants to be on offense."

At this point noticing Quick first really shouldn't matter, but Perry said it has actually played a big role for Quick with OU. Because not only did the Sooners recognize him way back when in April 2012, but the interest has never died down.

"I think right now you're looking at OU maybe in first, then Notre Dame and UCLA," Perry said. "I think OU is leading for him."

Of course it doesn't hurt for OU to have his former teammates Hatari Byrd and L.J. Moore on the roster and doesn't hurt with Byrd being his cousin.

The news isn't as great but isn't as disastrous as maybe it once appeared with Holmes College cornerback Tee Shepard. After some early confusion about his classification, Perry said he is going to be a Class of 2014 recruit.

A lot of the talk has been about Ole Miss and Mississippi State being the leaders for Shepard, but Perry, who trains Shepard, said that isn't the case.

"Believe me he's not going to the Mississippi schools," Perry said. "That's not going to happen."

USC has jumped into the Shepard mix and that feels like it might be the right fit. Perry said OU is still in play but no visit has been set up. Until it is, tough to consider the Sooners a real threat. Either way, Perry said Shepard will be ready to roll in June.

Dalton not looking around

Continuing the commit visit trend, offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh had a chance to visit Troy (Ohio) High offensive lineman Alex Dalton as well.

There has never been any talk at all of Dalton looking around. Following the visit, there is still no talk of Dalton looking for anywhere else to play.

"It's was a real good talk," Dalton said. "Right now the depth at the center position isn't all that great. We were just catching up more than anything. We talked about the Sugar Bowl. We talk on the phone all the time so it wasn't a big deal."

Dalton is sort of alone on an island when compared to the rest of the OU commits that basically stationed in the Midlands area and the west coast.

That's OK, said Dalton, he said he doesn't feel any disconnect with the rest of the commits. He said he doesn't talk with a lot of them but that has nothing to do with things not going well but more about the kids themselves being busy.

And it would help if there were more linemen for him to talk with.

"I've talked to Jonathan Alvarez a couple of times and that's been great," Dalton said. "I try to keep in touch with Justice (Hansen). But being an O-line commit, there aren't that many others right now."

Dalton is set for his official visit to campus next month, but he did make an unofficial visit with his family for OU's win against TCU. Because he had already done the recruiting part of the deal, he opted to not do that. Instead he was with the people and loved it.

"We actually went around and walked around and saw the tailgate atmosphere," Dalton said. "I wanted to see what it was like outside. The fans were awesome and really nice. It's a lot different atmosphere coming for a game instead of a practice. The whole stadium was just packed and so loud."

At this point, Dalton is done being a fan. He said he's watching the game and just imagining himself being in that position soon.

"All I'm doing is watching the offensive linemen and watching what they do, watching all the little things," Dalton said.

Dalton said he is 6-foot-4 and 280 pounds right now. No talk has been about his conditioning at this point. He wrestles at heavyweight (285 pounds), and he said maintaining his weight and conditioning has never been a problem.

Commit predictions

Since the next Intel won't be until 2014, thought I'd end with a commit predictions list for the recruits it feels like OU can land as of this date.

Jenks (Okla.) High safety Steven Parker – Not sure when, not sure how, but don't see how this one doesn't happen for OU. It would be a giant gut-punch if he chooses Texas A&M because of all the unofficial visits he has made to OU.

Plantation (Fla.) American Heritage cornerback Juwan Dowels – As long as he gets to campus, believe he'll be a Sooner. OU needs at least one or two cornerbacks and though committed to Northern Illinois, feels like OU can wrap this one up with a visit.

Running back Michael Warren or Xavier Turner – Simply put, whichever one academically qualifies first. Not going to hit you over the head with it as it has been well documented at this point.

Suwanee(Ga.) Collins Hill linebacker Jonathan Thomas – Provided he qualifies, this one feels like another shoo-in with a visit. OU looks like it's going to delay the visit for as long as possible until it knows for sure he's good to go. If he is good to go, just a matter of time.

Oklahoma City Douglass defensive end Deondre Clark – Gone back and forth with this one in my head, but I think the Sooners get him. LSU visit in January is good and then Montgomery and Stoops come back into play and make the flip happen.

Utah offensive tackle commit Kenyon Frison – Utes won't go away. Arizona State is going to put on the pressure, but I like the foundation OU has built with him via Stoops, Bedenbaugh and Montgomery. If he can come around on playing that far away from home, OU locks him up.

And then Sooners fill out class with commits from a yet offered offensive tackle and to be determined cornerback to give OU a class of 26 recruits for the 2014 class.


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