It’s not a state of panic or anything like that for Oklahoma in the secondary, but you can feel the urgency from defensive backs coach Kerry Cooks.
After a season where OU’s secondary didn’t play up to the standard Cooks had set in 2015, the goal is obviously to get back to that mark or be even better than what it was in 2015.
One way Cooks seems to be doing that is by attacking the secondary without any position in mind for a lot of the recruits. It’s not about being a cornerback or a safety or a nickelback. It’s about being a defensive back that brings a variety of weapons to the table.
You can see that in someone like OKC John Marshall’s Justin Broiles, now officially enrolled at OU and living in Norman. And you can see that in Cooks’ two latest offers made during the first day of the contact period Thursday.
Greenwood (Ind.) Center Grove ATH Russ Yeast (committed to Louisville)
Yeast was a beast at the Under Armour All-America Game. Suppose the question here is going to be where does Yeast want to play? If he wants to stick on offense, then the Cardinals are his best bet. If he’s OK with looking at defense, then the Sooners should have a shot.
Yeast is 5-11, which is right in line with the type of kids Cooks has been eyeing during the last year. Cooks is expected to visit Yeast early next week, and then we should all have a better idea of where things stand.
Richmond (Texas) George Ranch CB Samuel Barnes
With Jaylon Johnson going out the door, it was back to finding a defensive back for Cooks. Heading into the week, all eyes were on Barnes. And boom, just like that, the offer was made to the 6-foot-1 athlete who has been racking up the offers here lately.
Barnes said he didn’t have his visit schedule finalized when contacted by Sooners Illustrated on Thursday afternoon. It does feel like OU will get a visit from Barnes. And with the way OU has operated this recruiting cycle, next week would feel like the weekend.
Sooners seem to want to have as much of this class done by the final weekend as humanly possible. “Reserve your spot” has carried the day with this cycle, and it will again here.
Right now? These are the two defensive back prospects. The Sooners will definitely not take both of them so whoever is willing to make the call first, is going to be rolling with the band.