Having the look is one thing, being able to put it together is another. When it came to 2018 OKC Putnam City defensive end Ron Tatum everybody knew he looked the part.
His junior season, though, he showed he can play it as well. Listed at 6-foot-5 and 260 pounds, Tatum closed off his junior season with 88 tackles and nine sacks.
And an offer from Oklahoma.
Tatum was in Norman two weeks ago for the Sooners 56-3 win against Kansas and returned home the latest in-state prospect being targeted by the Sooners.
“I kind of saw it coming,” Tatum said. “I was hoping. It was the one offer I’ve really wanted.”
Coincidentally enough, as of now, his only other offer is from the Jayhawks but that should change when coaches get a chance to view his junior film.
Tatum said he was pleased with how his junior season went, believing he was much faster and stronger than he was a sophomore.
OU defensive line coach Calvin Thibodeaux had been showing some interest, and Tatum felt it could be a little bit more than that when he was asked to be in Norman for the KU game.
“They showed me around, and he said he really liked my tape,” Tatum said. “He said he really wants me to come back.”
That won’t be too hard to do. Since the Pirates missed out on the playoffs, Tatum said he’s ready to head back to Norman this weekend to see the Sooners take on Baylor.
Tatum joins Southmoore’s Brey Walker, Owasso’s Josh Proctor and Tulsa Union’s Patrick Fields as in-state recruits offered by OU for the 2018 class. Even though OU has always been the dream school, don’t expect a decision just yet.
“I never thought about it,” said Tatum on committing. “I want to see what else is out there, but the offer means a lot.”
Tatum said schools like Kansas State, Tulsa and Oklahoma State are among the teams beginning to show heavier interest.
With OU in its current defensive front, Tatum certainly fits the bill for what Thibodeaux is searching for in the tall, athletic defensive end. Tatum knows it, too, saying he believes he would fit perfectly with what OU is doing on defense right now.
Though the commitments aren’t there just yet, Thibodeaux continues to bust his butt on the trail. Tatum was quick to say Thibodeaux reaches out to him nearly every single day and that the relationship being built gets stronger by the day.
“He’s somebody I really believe can make me better,” Tatum said.