OU's defensive 'wish list'

OU is pretty set on offense but whoa, look out on defense. A list of the top names.

Things are starting to work themselves out on the recruiting trail. It’s time to start looking more intently on Oklahoma’s “wish list” for the Class of 2015.

Here is an idea of where OU stands in December. The number in parentheses indicates the number of recruits OU is looking to sign at the position for the Class of 2015. The names in no way reflect OU’s official board but are the best guesstimate of who OU is targeting.

Defense

DE (2)

Committed (2): Metairie (La.) Rummel’s Tyrell Jacobs. The first of OU two defensive end commits in July, Jacobs beat Kenneth Mann by 48 hours. It was all about getting him to campus and making sure his parents felt comfortable with everything. They did, which left no reason for Jacobs to delay the inevitable. Has had an outstanding senior season.

Burleson (Texas) High’s Kenneth Mann. Unlike Jacobs, Mann didn’t have his parents but still felt no reason to delay the decision. Not a highly recruited end by most schools, Mann seems to have the perfect size for what Jerry Montgomery is looking for at defensive end going forward. Sometimes scheme is more important than anything else.

Favorite: Ontario (Canada) St. Catharines’ Neville Gallimore. Montgomery made a huge impression with Gallimore in the winter and things have never slowed down. Gallimore had a great official visit to OU in September and quickly released a top five after the visit with OU easily making the cut. Has also visited Florida State and Auburn and Ohio State in the last two months.

Next in line: Yazoo City (Miss.) High’s Gabriel Campbell. Never easy to snatch a top Mississippi talent, but OU did it last year with Tito Windham so don’t rule it out. The official visit looks like it’s going to finally happen with him confirming he plans to be in Norman for Bedlam this weekend.

On the radar: Long Beach (Calif.) Poly’s Joseph Wicker. He’s a fringe guy. Depending on who you talk to, you get different things with Wicker until he set the record straight Tuesday and said he was visiting this weekend. It’s a huge Cali weekend at OU this weekend.

DT (2)

Committed (1): Jenks (Okla.) High’s Marquise Overton. A lifelong OU fan, it was just a matter of when OU was going to make the offer. Understanding there are limited amount of spots for OU at this position, Overton waited less than two months after the offer to go ahead and decide to commit. Everything has been pretty smooth ever since the pledge.

Favorite: Dallas Bishop Dunne’s Darrion Daniels. He finally broke his silence in August with a top 10. OU easily made that list and most believe it’s really only down to three schools with Texas Tech and Baylor joining that race. His father played for the Red Raiders so it will be a challenge for OU to lure him to Norman. He had a great official visit to campus in October.

Next in line: San Pablo (Calif.) Contra Costa’s Deonte Reynolds. Reynolds has already set up his official visit to Norman for Bedlam weekend. With the high quality OU has seen from its defensive tackles, getting an immediate impact might become necessary. A lot can change going forward, but the visit has been set since the summer.

LB (3-4)

Committed: None.

Favorite: Columbus (Ohio) Marion-Franklin’s Anthony McKee. We’ll know at this time next week. Official visits to OU and Michigan State are in the books. He will announce Dec. 21 on his birthday if he’s with the Sooners or the Spartans.

Dallas Skyline’s Anthony Wheeler. It’s all up to Wheeler now. It’s clear his top two schools are OU and Texas. It’s also clear Wheeler would love to see other schools for official visits. So it’s a waiting game to see what Wheeler ends up deciding. He seems to be the biggest 50/50 prospect on the board.

Next in line: New Orleans Charter’s Arthur McGinnis. In the spring it felt like OU was in play. In the summer it sort of went the other way. But now it’s clear the Sooners will be a player for McGinnis, who was set to have an official visit for this weekend. It will have to be rescheduled because of high school playoffs.

Indianapolis Lawrence Central’s Darrin Kirkland. The Sooners brought the big guns for his in-home visit with Bob Stoops and Tim Kish. OU did everything it could during his official visit last month. He’ll close out his official visits this month and then is set to announce at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in January. Ole Miss, Tennessee, Texas and USC also in the mix.

Tempe (Ariz.) Corona Del Sol’s Cassius Peat. Welcome back, Mr. Peat. With Peat having officially decommitted from UCLA this week, it’s game on again for OU to try land a four-star linebacker. Peat loved his visit at OU and seemed to have a great rapport with the coaches. Sooners might be able to make up ground in a hurry here.

On the radar: Mechanicsville (Va.) Atlee’s Ricky DeBerry. OU made his top eight, will probably make a top five, but it’s going to be so hard to get him away from the east coast. The Sooners did everything right on his official visit in September, but it still might not be enough for OU to land the five-star prospect. He is going to announce Dec. 19.

Not offered

Irving (Texas) Nimitz’s Michael Scott. OU talked to Thomas a lot during September and October, and he’s picked up a lot of offers since start of the season. OU was able to get him to Dallas for OU-Texas, but he has yet to make a visit. An offer could happen, though, as signing day gets closer.

Boutte (La.) Hahnville’s Dwaine Thomas. Committed to Louisiana Lafayette, Scout has Thomas ranked as a two-star safety, but OU views him as a linebacker. Once the Sooners get a crack at his senior film, it will become clear whether or not the Sooners want to get into the hunt or leave him be.

Things are starting to work themselves out on the recruiting trail. It’s time to start looking more intently on Oklahoma’s “wish list” for the Class of 2015.

Here is an idea of where OU stands in December at defensive back. The number in parentheses indicates the number of recruits OU is looking to sign at the position for the Class of 2015. The names in no way reflect OU’s official board but are the best guesstimate of who OU is targeting.

CB (2-3)

Committed (2): Pflugerville (Texas) Hendrickson’s P.J. Mbanasor. OU is clinging on with Mbanasor right now, who certainly noticed the mid-season troubles. He hasn’t visited anywhere else yet, and OU is in communication with him every single day. Late-season success might save OU in this one with TCU breathing down its neck.

Rochester (N.Y.) Monroe CC’s Will Johnson. Unknown with no offers one week and committed to OU the next. Simply just how fast things can work in the recruiting game. For most, it’s Sooners taking a chance at somebody not worthy, but OU certainly went out of its way to make he arrived and offered and had him commit.

Favorite: None. OU is looking around and maybe Jaylon Lane comes back into the mix, but there aren’t a huge number of targets.

Next in line: Polytechnic’s Ykili Ross. The third time is going to be the charm. He has scheduled official visits to OU twice only to have to reschedule them. He is set to come in this weekend and will announce at the U.S. Army game Jan. 3 so OU is going to have to work hard and fast to land the four-star prospect.

On the radar: San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills’ Dechaun Holiday. The question here is one we’ve seen pop up numerous times. When trying to take a kid far away from home, how much of an impact can you make before a visit is necessary? No question Holiday likes OU, but also he hasn’t even been close to setting up a visit after all these months. Hold out the slightest of hope here.

Safety (2-3)

Committed: (1) Midwest City (Okla.) High safety Will Sunderland. Fifty-four weeks after being offered, Sunderland committed in September. Major boost for OU in getting a top in-state prospect and a Scout 300 prospect at the same time. Sunderland is going to end up being one of the biggest recruiters for OU in the class.

Favorite: Waco (Texas) Midway’s Kahlil Haughton. Visits are done for Haughton. All five are in the books. He ended up seeing the Sooners on three separate occasions this season and should announce here soon as he said he was waiting for his senior season to finish before he made any sort of decision. Huge priority for OU.

Geismar (La.) Dutchtown’s Justin Reid. During the summer, it felt like OU could make a splash if it could get him on campus. The Sooners did just that on his official visit in September. Reid wants to take the rest of his visits, but OU has positioned itself as the clear No. 1 against any other competition going forward. This is turning into a huge battle as well with a lot of schools coming in late into the game.

Next in line: None. It’s a waiting game with Haughton and Reid, and then Mike Stoops can adjust from there.

Recently offered

Houston Cypress Falls’ Nate Dalton. Another one of those really tall cornerbacks that OU and Mike Stoops seem to love. He played quarterback in high school, but he’s a cornerback going forward and a late bloomer at that. Arkansas just recently entered the mix, and he will visit OU this weekend for Bedlam.

Waldorf (Md.) Stone’s Juwuan Briscoe. Has decommitted from Clemson, it just looks like it’s not quite going to happen just yet. Intends to visit in January, but the question is going to be if a spot is still there when it comes around.

Miami (Okla.) NEO A&M’s Justin Martin. No chance. He’s an SEC kid, question is which SEC school. Just because he’s playing in Oklahoma doesn’t mean he’s from the area. No ties at all, he’s going back home.

Los Angeles Pierce CC’s Ezekiel Turner. Fantastic shot at Turner now and the only safety in this group. Looked like a clear Pac-12 battle, but the Sooners put their best foot forward with Turner on his official visit. Arizona State and Washington remain in the mix.

Chattanooga (Tenn.) Notre Dame’s Kareem Orr. Committed to Louisville, Orr made his official visit with the Cardinals last weekend. If he shuts down his recruitment in the upcoming weeks, safe to say it was a great visit.

Long Beach (Calif.) Polytechnic’s Colin Samuel. Huge couple of weeks for Samuel so it’s going to be about how much OU turns up the pressure. He landed one prestigious offer after another so it’s tough to accurately say where OU stands.

Manvel (Texas) High’s Will Lockett. Looked like the next OU commit and now it looks like he will stick with UCLA. Took official visits to both schools and absolutely feels like he is going to stay with the Bruins.

Not offered

Dallas Kimball’s Antoine Stephens. A cornerback that came out of nowhere. On nobody’s radar but a fantastic senior season has him in the peripherals right now. OU could return to Stephens down the road as there has been preliminary contact already.


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