© Greg Powers

Darrell Simpson, Verone McKinley returning to OU

OU is welcoming back a couple of familiar 2018 faces this weekend in Darrell Simpson and Verone McKinley.

If you follow recruiting long enough, there’s one adage that turns out to be pretty true. Don’t listen to what a recruit says, watch what he does.

There’s no doubt Lewisville (Texas) Hebron cornerback Verone McKinley and Justin (Texas) Northwest offensive tackle Darrell Simpson have loads of suitors.



Both are ranked in the Scout 300 for the 2018 class and Simpson is currently the No. 1-ranked offensive tackle in the state of Texas for 2018.

Their offer sheets are impressive as you would expect, but there’s a common bond between them. Whenever they get a chance, they head back to Oklahoma. Time and time again. And then again.

The duo will be back at Owen Field this week, unsurprisingly, as a part of the huge recruiting ensemble expected to watch OU vs. Ohio State. If it’s tough to remember just how many times they’ve been to OU, that’s a good thing.

First of all, it starts early. McKinley was offered last spring. Not four, five months ago, but more than 16 months ago so defensive backs coach Kerry Cooks laid down the foundation early.

Simpson was offered last summer despite the fact he didn’t even participate in OU’s elite one-day camp in Norman last year. Offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh had seen everything needed to and made the call.

They both made unofficial visits, and then you start letting the recruits do the work for you. In this case, it has been OU’s 2017 SoonerSquad17 class putting in the legwork with both of them.

They have made multiple trips to Norman since then. Perhaps more importantly, both were at the #ChampUBBQ, which could be a game-changer for OU as it pertains to 2018 recruits.

Simpson, at least early on, felt like a strong Texas A&M lean. Those days are gone. Simpson still has contact with the Aggies, for sure, but the Sooners seem to be the school to beat now.

McKinley trains with several of OU’s 2017 commits and has a great bond with Cooks and Chip Viney from the last year.

There’s no doubt McKinley and Simpson will make more visits and they’ll see the schools they mention wanting to visit across the country. They’re too good to not get that chance. But always be watching. When it’s all said and done, will they still continue to end up in Norman one way or another?

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