Philadelphia Imhotep Charter offensive guard JohnCarlo Valentin wasn’t about to pull any punches. When he first received the Oklahoma offer, he had no idea whatsoever he would end up with the Sooners.
Valentin wasn’t on OU’s radar until after working at The Opening, Valentin got to know former OU star offensive tackle Trent Williams. The Washington Redskins star let Valentin know about how good OU could be to somebody like him down the road.
“At first, I didn’t really think OU was going to be a legitimate option,” Valentin said. “I knew about OU but didn’t know nearly as much as I know about it now. I had no idea how the people are and stuff like that.”
Valentin got the feel about that when he made his official visit to Norman back in September to watch the Sooners take care of Akron.
It wasn’t exactly the best game to attend in terms of getting an idea of what the 2015 Sooners were going to be about, but he loved his visit.
Time went on, and it felt like both sides might be moving on from each other. However, Valentin really did enjoy the trip to Norman and was hopeful to make it back.
Instead of him coming to Norman, OU came to him. With the dead period ending, offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley made the trip to Philadelphia to check in with Valentin. Little did Riley know OU was about to add its fourth offensive line commitment.
“I just felt like it was the right time,” Valentin said. “Coach B (Bill Bedenbaugh), Coach Riley and Coach (Bob) Stoops – they just put everything out there. I felt comfortable.”
Valentin committed after Riley’s visit, and the celebration was on in Norman for the addition of the three-star offensive guard. Valentin was able to talk with all three coaches, and they let him know full well he had made their day.
He still had three official visits left, which was one big reason why nobody expected much of anything to happen with OU and Valentin and definitely not that weekend. A proposed visit to South Carolina fell through for last weekend, and Valentin decided he had seen enough.
As has been the case for a bevy of Bedenbaugh recruits, Valentin said the door is open in terms of his position going forward.
“He said it’s more than likely to be guard, but he would give me a shot at tackle, too, if necessary,” Valentin said. “I can play both so I’m not concerned. Just talking it over with everybody, it made a lot of sense to me and a chance to get away from home.”
Valentin had quality regional offers across the board, and it always looked like he might stay closer to home. Nothing is set in stone just yet regarding his academic status, but sources have said he’s in a much better spot now than he was a few months ago.
As for being doing with the recruiting process, Valentin was understandably relieved.
“It feels good,” Valentin said. “It feels really good to know I have found my home.”