Sooner Intel, Pt. I: News and nuggets

Get all caught up on OU-related news from the Opening regional.

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.

Hines building the bond with Kish

It’s pointless to ask 2017 Plano (Texas) East five-star linebacker Anthony Hines anything regarding a decision or narrowing things down. With more than 60 offers in his bag, it’s not fair to assume he’s ready to do any of that stuff.

But what is fair is that Hines has an OU offer and has already made multiple unofficial visits to campus. There’s no other way to put that than as a positive sign for OU going forward. Leading the charge with Hines is linebackers coach Tim Kish with some assistance from Bob and Mike Stoops.

“Coach Kish and the Stoops brothers really make you feel at home,” Hines said. “I get tons of mail from them all the time. They’re really recruiting me hard.”

Hines said the work of Kish has definitely stood out. Kish has been a tough read among recruiting circles because of how quiet he goes about his business, but it’s clear it’s working right now with Hines.

“His persistence means a lot,” Hines said. “He is always keeping up on me and asking how I’m doing and what’s new. It goes a long way.”

Hines was ribbed a bit when he tweeted recently he was almost ready for a top 30. Truth is he still can’t pin anything down because the offers keep flooding in. So even if there is no top 30 right now, it’s a safe bet OU is in the mix based on the multiple visits.

“I just want to make sure I didn’t miss anything,” said Hines about why he is already taking multiple visits to schools. “I want to make sure it is what it seems. I want to go on a regular day and see how life there is because that’s what you’re going to experience. OU has been great so far.”

Hines said he hasn’t had any communication with the OU staff since the racial video was released, but he also said it didn’t change his opinion of OU one bit. He said you can’t control those type of feelings, but OU’s actions show how serious it views the situation.

Hines was named the Linebacker MVP at the Opening regional last weekend.

Cobb impressed by first OU trip

Ready for an all-Opening regional Intel? Let’s get to it. We’ll start in the secondary with Waco (Texas) La Vega cornerback Parrish Cobb, who was one of several recruits to make his first trip to OU on junior day two weeks ago.

Cobb, who already had an OU offer coming into the event, had no idea he was on the Sooners’ radar until the offer.

“I didn’t see it coming at all,” Cobb said. “When they made the offer, that was actually the first time hearing from OU. I had been thinking about OU a lot but hadn’t heard anything before that offer.”

The trip gave him a chance to meet OU coaches Bob Stoops and Kerry Cooks for the first time, and Cobb had strong positive words about both of them, starting with Cooks.

“He’s a real good coach, he actually treats me like I’m his own son,” Cobb said. “It’s like one big family there.”

Cobb’s offer sheet is starting to increase, but OU was among the first so the Sooners are in good standing. However, he said the thought of an early commitment never crossed his mind, and he does have trips planned for Oregon and Alabama coming up.

Those schools will have some work to do as Cobb said he loved his visit and loved getting to know Stoops better.

“They were talking about how happy they are about where the program is going and want to keep things rolling,” Cobb said. “He’s a real good coach and gave me a lot of insight into the school.

“The one thing about Coach Stoops is you know he’s going to keep his team on the map. No matter what, they’re always going to be one of the top schools.”

Cobb was one of several players asked by Sooners Illustrated if the racial chant video by the former OU fraternity would play a role into things, and Cobb said it wouldn’t. For Cobb, disbanding the fraternity and holding the silent demonstrations showed OU’s true character on the situation.

Chambers readjusting to Sooners

The Opening regional was a great time to check in with some of OU’s top defensive linemen recruits and where the Sooners stand heading into spring.

Former OU defensive line coach Jerry Montgomery had done such a great job of identifying the key targets early and building that bond. The problem was, however, once Montgomery was gone, virtually a recruit’s entire link to OU was gone.

That was indeed the case with Houston MacArthur’s Isaiah Chambers. Montgomery was his go-to guy at OU. And with Diron Reynolds taking over, it’s not so much OU is out the picture but the relationship needs to be built back up.

“It’s a rebuilding in a way because he (Montgomery) was the only one I was talking to all the time,” Chambers said. “After he left, it did die for a couple of weeks. Actually when he left, Bob Stoops became the guy. He was hitting me up almost every day to try to reassure me things will be OK.”

Reynolds and Chambers have connected on social media and the hope was for Chambers to have attended OU’s junior day two weeks ago. Chambers said he was unable to get transportation to Norman but is hopeful to hit OU’s spring game April 11.

“I definitely want to come up, maybe for the spring game,” Chambers said. “OU hasn’t fallen off, it’s not out of the picture. I just have to see how things are with the new coaches.”

Chambers said he is in no rush whatsoever right now, planning to narrow his choices down in the summer. He’s a number of trips in the books and a number already planned so it’s definitely going to be huge for OU to get him on campus.

In talking about the racial video, Chambers said, in his mind, OU’s response has now trumped the negativity in the video itself and doesn’t see it playing a factor.

Reynolds has work to do with Agim

You can almost copy and paste what was written with Chambers in regard to Hope (Ark.) High’s McTelvin Agim. The Scout 300 defensive lineman prospect has now had his OU offer for more than a year, but it was Montgomery that was the main link.

The biggest difference right now with Agim is he hasn’t visited Norman since the summer camp but also doesn’t have a potential visit to OU in the cards right now.

“I want to see how me and Coach Reynolds gel, but I don’t know yet,” Agim said. “I’ve talked to him a little bit on social media but not on the phone yet.”

Agim said he wants to get to know Reynolds, but the other fact of the matter is Agim is trying to see just about every single school he can. He wants to give a number of them a fair shot.

But in talking to several sources, it’s tough to see how he escapes the Arkansas border. The Razorbacks do such a great job of locking down the top in-state kids. And when you combine that with all the trips Agim has made to Fayetteville in the last six months, it almost feels like OU would be better served to look elsewhere.

Agim was thrilled to get the OU offer on the anniversary of his grandmother’s death last year. It meant a lot, but it doesn’t feel like it’s going to happen with Agim and the Sooners.

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