Sooners Tracking Askew

LaVunce Askew has spent the past six months working hard and eating right, focused on getting himself bigger and stronger for his upcoming senior season. With over 10 written scholarship offers in hand from Division I-A programs, Askew says he has no favorites and likes something about all of his offers, including Oklahoma.

The past six months have been full of plenty of hard work and eating for Camden, Ark., defensive tackle Lavunce Askew as he has added roughly 30 pounds to his thick frame. Currently standing in at roughly 6-foot-2.5, 280 pounds, Askew is simply considering all of his options, keeping and open mind and continuing to improve himself physically over the summer.

"I've got my weight up to 280 pounds now just from eating a lot of protein and spending all of my free time lifting and working out," Askew said. "I also got my 40-yard dash time down to a hand timed 4.83 and have really improved my strength numbers. My max bench is now 405 pounds and I squatted 450 pounds recently for a max. I also just got my grades and test scores back and have a 2.8 core GPA and scored a 21 on my ACT, so I won't be taking the SAT now."

With others such as Mississippi, Mississippi State, Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Tennessee, Washington, Auburn, Texas Tech and Tulsa actively recruiting the Camden Fairview defensive lineman, where does Oklahoma fit in?

"Coach (Chris) Wilson is recruiting me and we have a really good relationship because he grew up the way I grew up and is just a cool guy," Askew explained. "I like the way he talks to me and carries himself and when I look in his eyes as he is telling me something I know he is telling me the truth which is big. I plan on taking an official visit to Oklahoma when my senior season is over and would love to get out for a really big game there. I'm not taking any official visits during my season though because I want to focus on winning a championship and helping my teammates, not picking schools."

"One thing that I really like about Oklahoma is just the way they play on the defensive side of the ball," Askew added. "They play fast and I love the stunting and movement they do with their defensive fronts. I'm just a country boy, so I will do whatever they teach and tell me to do and love to get physical. Last year I really liked watching C.J. Ah You because he has the same number as me and plays like a real man. He stays low and uses his hands well and is very versatile. I think I play a lot like him and have the versatility to where I could play a number of different positions in different fronts for a team in college. Oklahoma has a darn good defense and I always love watching Adrian Peterson play too."

Standing between Oklahoma and Askew right now is one small problem, he has not been on campus yet and does not plan on taking officials until after his senior year, by which time the recruiting picture in Norman could be much different at his position. We asked if a summer visit could be in the works and Askew filled us in on what he is thinking.

"Like I said, I like their defense and the way they play football and have heard nothing but good things about them, so I want to get out there," Askew stated. "I am going to try my best to get out to Oklahoma State this summer and will stop by Oklahoma if I am allowed while we are out there. I'm not sure I will be taking either of those visits yet, but they are being planned. Oklahoma has a winning tradition and I do want a chance to play for a winner, so I will try my best. As for a decision, I have absolutely no favorites right now and everyone is on the same level. I plan to take all five official visits and then make my decision after that."

Given that Askew has spent so much time and effort improving his body over the offseason we inquired as to what he will be doing to improve his game as well. He talked to us a bit about what he thinks he does well and what he needs to work on.

"First of all, there is always somebody better then you, so I think I need to continue to work on both my strengths and my weaknesses. I am versatile and am quick off the line of scrimmage, but I'm more of a country boy bull rusher that just likes to hit you in the mouth, so I need to work on some different moves to get to the quarterback. My spin move in particular is one that needs a lot of work. Other then that it is like I said, I will just be working on everything."

As a junior, Askew racked up 68 tackles, five sacks, 20 tackles for loss and recovered a fumble to earn All-Conference and All-State honors.

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