ou-twitter-avatar1 Jonathan Thomas Note

Last I heard Oklahoma is still looking for at least one more HS linebacker. One of things Oklahoma likes about Georgia LB, Jonathan Thomas is they feel he can play OLB or grow into an inside LB. As I’ve said before, he is raw – he’s only played ball for two years. He grew up playing soccer. Coach Mike has those inside LBs playing a Tampa 2 technique on occasion (which got us burned quite a bit unfortunately) and one of the areas you see how raw JT is – is in his drops. But the kid is athletic and his coach, Coach Reach, and I have talked and it’s obvious he can play in space and he can move in coverage so I have no doubt he can pick up the technique he needs once he gets into a good program.

The issue with JT has always been getting qualified. I’ve said before and I’ll repeat it (because I hate when people get the wrong impression about these kids) JT’s grades in the recent semesters have been just fine and he is an intelligent kid. His issues come from early on in HS when he wasn’t being vigilant about his school work. A few weeks back Coach Reach said his qualification issue was going to be close either way. I spoke to JT yesterday and for the most part he felt pretty good after finals and is hopeful he will qualify. He said if he has to go JUCO though, he will do it and work hard to make it into a BCS program. Obviously Oklahoma rarely places kids so it seems OU hasn’t been nearly as aggressive with his recruitment and has taken a bit of a wait and see approach.

Just a week ago if you asked me, or him for that matter, I would have told you he was OU’s to lose. But in speaking to him last night you can tell that Syracuse has made a real impression on him and his family. Coach Kish did visit him about a week ago but Syracuse has already sent multiple coaches down to Georgia to visit JT and his family. And he let me know straight up that Syracuse’s more aggressive recruiting style and their openness about how much they want him and want him to qualify has made an impression lately.

Bottom line here is if JT does qualify it looks like it’s going to come down to OU and Syracuse and while it seemed like a foregone conclusion that he’d end up at OU in that scenario, he admitted the decision is going to be tougher than he once thought. JT is a great great kid…a class act…and you can tell there is a sense of loyalty there to Syracuse and that’s going to be a bit of a hurdle for OU to overcome. Definitely not insurmountable but a little tougher than I would have thought just last week.

Related Note: As y’all know Oklahoma is still recruiting Ismael Murphy Richardson, the ultra long and ultra athletic LB from Arizona. IMR is around 6’5 and he can run and he’s another kid that can play multiple LB positions (in the Big 12 the line between an ILB and OLB has blurred a little so Oklahoma is looking for athletes they can mold). The problem here is that IMR has a legit offer to USC and has already made a visit to TAMU. For a kid that was at one time assumed to be very interested in Oklahoma, nothing in his actions so far seem to indicate that OU is sitting pretty there.

  • Sooner_Ace

    Thanks for the knowledge, even if it is not all roses, Have a a good holiday to all the brainiacs staff and readers out there! Cheers!

    • Super K

      You too brother! Appreciate you being part of the family here :)

    • http://www.TheFootballBrainiacs.com/ JY

      You too Ace!

  • Michael Pendley

    Thanks for the post. I also read yesterday that stud LB Bo Scarbough current Alabama commit is setting up an official vist to OU. You guys heard anything around this?

    • Super K

      Yeah I heard there was a chance but didn’t mention it because the chance just seemed too slim lol :) But thanks for the note bud!

      • OUFan123

        If somehow a miracle happened and Scarbrough did end up visiting, what do you think our chances would be?

        • Super K

          Asked a coach down in SEC country and he said “less than 0% chance” but I don’t personally know.

          • OUFan123

            Reminds me of my favorite movie, Dumb & Dumber:

            Lloyd:
            Hit me with it! Just give it to me straight! I came a long way just to
            see you, Mary. The least you can do is level with me. What are my
            chances?

            Mary:
            Not good.

            Lloyd:
            You mean, not good like one out of a hundred?

            Mary:
            I’d say more like one out of a million.

            [pause]

            Lloyd:
            So you’re telling me there’s a chance… *YEAH!*

          • Super K

            Lol never gets old!

          • blaster1371

            Gotta love optimism…..to OU fans its oxygen!

      • Michael Pendley

        No prob just checking!

  • Super K

    Sorry about the technical issue there earlier – accidentally had the post set on “evaluation” mode. But it should be fixed now.

  • Billy Jackson

    Seems like Syracuse would be a little tougher to get into than OU.

    • Super K

      That’s what I figured. I asked him and he said it was the same but I’m not sure either way.

      • Billy Jackson

        Yes, and this isn’t a knock against OU. I graduated from Oklahoma. I just figured Syracuse would be more stringent with their SATs and require a higher GPA to qualify.

        Of course, I’m not sure if it’s different for athletes. ACC is a pretty academic based league, though.

  • blaster1371

    I know this is off the subject on linebackers but the Micah Quick situation is getting interesting. USC and Sark are making some in roads with him. I had read he was scheduled for another visi to USCt. It’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that Lee will be moving on to the NFL and there is not much depth at WR so Quick could/would see the field on game one. Kessling (the QB- I may be off a little on his name) is starting to make some real progress. My take on Quick is that he is “open” to the idea of going to OU but its nothing he is excited about. OU is stacked at that position and coupled with the real sense in USC fandom that Sark will bring them back to prominence, I think Quick is leaning USC.

    • Super K

      Good post blaster and yes USCs stability is going to make things tougher. But what OU has always had going for it is Coach Perry (Quick’s coach). Coach Perry wants as many of his players as possible to end up at OU. OU has coach Viney and of course Hatari and LJ. It’s Perry’s doing that OU is still in on Tee Shepard. So OU still has a lot going for it even if USC can make a stronger case now.

      • blaster1371

        I was wondering about Tee Shepherd. I remembered reading when he left Notre Dame that he was trying to get to OU but grades or something kept him out. I had not heard his name attached to OU since then but have heard PAC 12 teams on his list. Quick went on his USC visit with Shepherd.

    • OUFan123

      USC’s scholarship sanctions might make things less stable than we think. I know they’re much more stable now with Sark, but they still can only sign 15-20 players. I could care less about USC, but since they’re so limited with who they can bring in and how many they’ve already received verbal commits from, maybe that might work in OU’s favor.

      • Super K

        Good point 123

      • blaster1371

        Its not that USC is a threat to the OU program. The cumulative affect of a surge in PAC 12 teams will make a dent on OU recruiting out west. It has been pretty interesting to watch Arizona State and UCLA getting a lot of consideration. A new “pipeline” from the PAC 12 has been established here in the CA central valley (which includes Fresno). I hope OU keeps its hands in CA. If our team can get two or three really good ones a year (i wouldn’t mind more) out of Cali then that OU footprint will remain strong. I already get more acknowledgments (friendly ones at that) when I wear my OU hat or shirt out here in central Cali than just three years ago. So, the brand is recognized out here in the land of fruits and nuts.

  • hOUligan

    As the interest in Jonathon Thomas goes down, I hope the interest in Jonathon Willis rises and he finally picks up that OU offer. From what SpecK has said, he’s a great young man, got his grades and his film is fabulous. Think he can do anything Thomas can do. Plus, he’s an Oklahoma kid who would put it out there for OU. And from what you guys are saying, IMR isn’t coming, either.