Sooner Intel, Pt. I: OU news and nuggets

Get the lowdown on everything OU recruiting heading into a major visitors weekend for the Sooners.

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.

Garnett ready for OU trip

Back oh so long ago (Tuesday), the biggest uncommitted name coming to campus this weekend was New Orleans St. Augustine defensive tackle Courtney Garnett.

A lot has changed since then, but Garnett is still taking his official visit to OU this weekend and is still one of the names OU fans should be watching for.

And one thing working in OU's favor is getting the commitment of his teammate, three-star offensive tackle Joseph Paul, last week. Paul will be with Garnett on an official visit of his own.

"Of course it plays a role," Garnett said. "To be able to go up there with somebody who you've been knowing for the last four or five years is great. It lets me know I wouldn't be going there alone. We would be able to keep building that relationship and that's something that doesn't happen too often."

Garnett committed to Texas in March by chance more than anything else. Most felt back then it was between OU and Texas, but he saw Austin before Norman and that's how it worked out.

OU defensive line coach Jerry Montgomery never stopped putting the work in, though, and keeping tabs on how things were going. And when everything happened with Mack Brown and Charlie Strong and the rest of the coaching staff, it was time for OU to pounce.

The Sooners aren't alone. Oregon and USC have also offered Garnett in the last couple of weeks and Tennessee stands as the biggest threat to the Sooners right now.

But all of those schools are playing catch up to OU, and more specifically, Montgomery.

"When's the last time I talked to him? Yesterday, the day before, day before that. We talk every day," Garnett said. "I'm looking to go somewhere I'm comfortable, and I know I'll be comfortable up there because I have a great relationship with Coach Montgomery. I know I can trust him."

Now he's not saying he can't trust the other coaches, but knowing you can trust a coach versus hoping you can obviously makes a world of difference.

Watching what OU did in the Allstate Sugar Bowl, yeah, that's not hurting the Sooners chances, either.

"I want to go to a program that's going to win, and it's in a great direction with the win over Alabama," Garnett said. "I was very impressed. They came out with that chip on their shoulder and flew around the ball. Great performance."

Classified as a defensive tackle, Garnett said he has been told he'll play wherever he fits, whether it's tackle or defensive end.

Garnett has talked about visiting Tennessee next week and maybe hearing from some other schools, but he didn't beat around the bush when it came to this weekend.

"There's a great possibility it may happen," said Garnett of a commitment this weekend.

Paul guaranteed to last week Garnett will join him in committing to OU.

Glenn staying home

It's not all good news for OU on the trail. The biggest reason Garnett has become a target is because of the situation with Carrollton (Texas) Ranchview commit Brandon Glenn.

Expected to make an official visit this weekend, Glenn confirmed Thursday he is staying home. That might signify things are just about over between OU and Glenn because of his academic situation, something Glenn has taken full responsibility about.

"I have to get a 2.4 (GPA) or get my testing scores up," Glenn said. "I took both of them. Turns out I did better on the SAT so now I've been taking a 14-week SAT prep course. I'm going to take it March 8."

Because Glenn has not qualified, by rule, he cannot take an official visit to a campus, and he said things took a turn for the worse this semester when he failed one of his classes.

He said he is extremely disappointed because he knew in June that OU was taking a chance on him with his academic situation, and he feels like he has let everybody down.

The possibility of double-signing has already been brought up by defensive line coach Jerry Montgomery. As of now, Arizona Western has been discussed as the junior college Montgomery would like Glenn to attend.

"Everything is about getting my grades up," Glenn said. "I've stopped playing basketball so I can focus on my grades and conditioning."

Glenn talked earlier this week about being hesitant about taking the visit because he doesn't want to have all that fun with the coaches and recruits and then realize it's not going to happen. He didn't want to put himself through that tease.

The Allstate Sugar Bowl was enough of a tease.

"All I kept thinking was if I get the chance to go there, it's a great opportunity," Glenn said. "That night was just crazy. If I can get things worked out, I'd have a chance to play with Charles Tapper. That would be awesome. He's my favorite defensive lineman."

Glenn is still being recruited as a defensive tackle and played this season at the position to help prepare himself for OU. He said it was a lot different than defensive end, and it took him a while to adjust to everything.

He understands why Montgomery is looking around for other defensive linemen and said he has no problems with how OU is handling the situation. In the end, it's up to Glenn to get it corrected.

What to expect?

All week been talking about this being the biggest visit weekend of the year for the Sooners. It's true in terms of the quantity of recruits on campus.

But will that mean it's the most productive weekend? As of Friday morning, remains to be seen. Four top targets are visiting to go along with several commits on official visits.

This has been targeted as the weekend for recruiting this year by the OU coaches. They made it clear back in September this year wasn't about banquet weekend, but about the first weekend after the dead period.

So you've got New Orleans St. Augustine defensive tackle Courtney Garnett, Klein (Texas) Collins safety Jordan Thomas, Oklahoma City Douglass defensive end Deondre Clark and Jenks (Okla.) High safety Steven Parker all visiting.

The smart money is on Garnett's commitment. I don't think anybody would be shocked by that. The intriguing ones are the top two-ranked in-state prospects.

Parker and Clark have developed a solid friendship over the last year and were teammates at the Semper Fi game two weeks ago.

Going into the week, it looked like Parker was going to visit nowhere and Clark was going to visit Arizona State. It's not outlandish to say that maybe both are going to OU this weekend to end their recruitment, but it also isn't shocking if both go back home in the same situation they're in now.

Clark is the ultimate soft LSU commit despite a quality in-home visit by LSU on Thursday evening, and Parker has already scheduled a visit to Auburn so this weekend is so intriguing. Thomas seems to be warming up more and more to OU as time goes by, and it's possible this visit is just a mere formality to him switching.

OU could end up with four commits at the end of the weekend or could be a goose egg. Either way, it won't be boring, and it's a great sign for OU to continue building on that momentum it has gathered in the last month.

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