In a state as relatively small as Oklahoma is, you expect just about everybody to know everybody else, especially when it comes to the top recruiting prospects.
But it’s a good 90-minute drive from Oklahoma City up the turnpike to Tulsa and sometimes out of sight is certainly out of mind.
The goal was never for OKC John Marshall defensive back Justin Broiles and Tulsa (Okla.) Union cornerback Tre Brown to be a package deal.
The duo, both four-star prospects ranked in the Scout 300, really didn’t even interact with each other until the recruiting process started to heat up.
Now? They’re basically inseparable. It has been a long time since you can find a better one-two punch at cornerback in the state. A long time.
The seeds were planted early. Sooners Illustrated ranked Brown and Broiles among the seven best defenders at OU’s elite one-day camp last June. You knew both were going to be something. How good was the only question.
“That’s my guy,” Broiles said. “Ever since last year. Once this whole recruiting stuff started taking off, we’ve just been building that relationship.”
And racking up the offers. Broiles, ranked No. 240 in the Scout 300, is at 33 offers as of right now. Brown, ranked No. 219, is just under 20.
The offer train has slowed down for both since committing to OU because most schools know once the Sooners have put in the work with top in-state recruits, there’s no point in wasting time trying to persuade them to do anything else.
For one month, though, it was like a game of who can top this? Each earning notable offer after another and a lot of them from the same schools.
Add them all up and 16 schools offered both Broiles and Brown. Heck, OU did it the very same day back on Valentine’s Day weekend when the Sooners brought in a number of top recruits in the state for the OU-Kansas basketball game.
“We’re like brothers,” Brown said. “Him having the success he’s having and me having mine – yea, we knew it was coming.”
It was the big boys, too. Of the 16 schools that offered both of them, 12 were from Power 5 conference schools. Although it’s tough to assume, based on their potential and ability, it’s safe bet it wasn’t Broiles or Brown. This wasn’t an either/or situation, but an AND situation.
You take Broiles, and you’d still take Brown. You want Brown, but that doesn’t mean you don’t covet Broiles.
The biggest reason? They’re completely different players.
“The one thing it would be would have to be his speed,” said Broiles about what separates Brown. “He has 10.5 (100-meter dash) speed, and you’re not going to find too many people like that.”
Indeed. Brown is one of the fastest kids in the state yet alone football players. Where Brown has made his money with his speed, it’s the physical nature of Broiles that put him on the map.
In a one-on-one setting, you won’t find anyone more aggressive or confident than Broiles. He trusts his ability 100 percent. Even when he was at two offers in January, it’s that swagger that has always identified Broiles.
“It’s his patience,” Brown said. “He just always had trust in the process and didn’t jump into everything. He waited until the moment was right.”
That moment occurred earlier this month when Broiles committed to OU on March 7 with Brown following March 11. There was some thought of committing on the same day, but Brown said Broiles deserved to have his own moment.
The commitments are out of the way. Now it’s all about helping build #SoonerSquad17 to being the best it can be. Already ranked No. 2 in the Scout 2017 rankings, the pledges of Broiles and Brown are major reasons why OU is off to such a great start on the recruiting trail.