Sooner mailbag: OU slipping?

Mailbag examines three major prospects for OU and where Sooners stand in late July.

Almost done with July and things haven’t really changed for Oklahoma on the recruiting trail. Check back in with another edition of the mailbag.

How did OU drop the ball with Levi Draper?

The major news of the week happened early with Collinsville (Okla.) High 2017 linebacker Levi Draper committing to Oklahoma State.

Draper, ranked No. 84 in the Scout 100 for 2017, pledged to the Cowboys while on a visit Monday afternoon.

To say it was a shock is absolutely accurate. Draper talked about visiting OU, USC and Clemson here in the next few weeks before his junior season started.

After spending a lot of time with Draper, it was clear he wasn’t looking to drag out this recruitment, but OSU never appeared to be in the driver’s seat. In the conversation, yes, but not the leader.

OU just spent too much time lollygagging with Draper and not showing the interest other schools were. An offer is one thing but consistent attention is another. OSU did both repeatedly and scored a major prospect for 2017.

But again, that’s 2017, a whole lot of things can happen from now until signing day for a kid that grew up with his bathroom decorated with OU memorabilia.

Is OU losing ground with Whaley?

Beaumont (Texas) Central running back Devwah Whaley is starting to make the rounds as it feels like he’s getting pretty dang close toward making his call.

Whaley, the No. 1-ranked running back in Texas, visited Georgia last weekend and is set to visit Arkansas later this week. OU, Texas and Texas A&M round out his top five.

The Longhorns have a lot of momentum with Whaley, but there’s still nothing to suggest OU has fallen out of favor with the four-star prospect.

It could be a case of Whaley checking out all options before making his call once and for all. That call still feels like it’s going to be to the OU coaching staff with the Sooners striking gold once again at running back in the Lone Star State.

What Whaley does a great job of doing is not getting impulsive. No doubt Texas did all the right things and struck the right chord in the last couple of months, but it just doesn’t feel like it has been enough to overtake the Sooners.

Not a question, just give me some good news.

Fair enough. OU could legitimately pull off a California double at linebacker for this class with Fresno (Calif.) Clovis West’s Caleb Kelly and Los Osos (Calif.) High’s Bryce Youngquist.

What seemed out of reach last month seems very possible and bordering on probable here in the last week.

Kelly and OU seem to be re-building that strong initial bond as the Sooners took notice of what schools like Michigan were doing and narrowing that gap. That gap once again feels like it’s getting wider by the day.

The shock comes with Youngquist, another prospect in the Scout 300. Thought to be a shoo-in for Oregon, his trip to Norman last week could have been a game-changer.

He has given it the highest marks possible, and OU is certainly not a token finalist in this equation. Youngquist is set to decide in the next week or so and don’t be shocked if OU ends up being the answer this time around.


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