Open Post | Weekend, May 3rd – 5th

Weekend Visitors
– Charlie S

Sooners will be hosting five recruits for official visits this weekend.

2020 OT – Geirean Hatchett (Ferndale, WA)

2020 OL – Jonah Monheim (Moorpark, CA)

2020 OL – Noah Nelson (Gilbert, AZ)

2020 LB – Kourt Williams (Bellflower, CA)

2020 RB – Seth McGowan (Mesquite, TX)

Obviously the offensive linemen are at a position of need for the 2020 cycle as is Kourt WIlliams at linebacker.

Perhaps the most intriguing visit is Seth McGowan as the Sooners currently have Jase McClellan already committed and they are in good position with several other backs. McGowan is absolutely a take for OU and it will be interesting to see how hard the Sooners push this weekend.

Offensive Line | Quick-Hitters
– Super K

I know the offensive line recruiting is a bit of a head-scratcher at the moment but trust Bedenbaugh.

A few quick notes here…

***Spoke with James and he tells me that the word he’s hearing is similar to what Aki told me – that Aki speaks to OU nearly everyday. This one might just be a situation where a kid made a decision and doesn’t want to look bad by backing off, immediately.

Again, just be patient here.

***I checked with a coach over at North Shore on how things are looking with 2020 OT, Damieon George.

I’m told George wants to make it up to OU for an unofficial but coach tells me it is more likely to happen after schools out this summer.

***A possible connection to George is the fate of 2020 OT Marcus Dumervil. Source close to Dumervil tells me to watch out for OU and Alabama in this race. But Bama is also in the thick of things with George. So, it could be a situation where OU and Bama split here.

***Andrew Raym dropped his top five which consisted of OU, Georgia, LSU, Michigan and TAMU.

Raym tells me that he will take all his official visits before announcing a decision. So, I don’t expect anything to happen with him anytime soon.

Big Board | 2020 Defensive Backs
Charlie S

The Sooners will look to add four defensive backs in the 2020 class (at this point). The numbers are pretty straight forward, however, with some attrition, they could change.

Below is our latest big board for the defensive backs. The Sooners already have two big-time commits at cornerback so right now, you are looking for two safeties, and you also have the potential for OU Commit DJ Graham to join the defensive back class down the line as he is classified as an athlete right now.

Dontae Manning – Cornerback – 6’0″ 175 lbs – Kansas City, MO. – OU Commit – Manning was a huge get for the Sooners as he is exactly what we have come to learn that Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch is looking for in his defensive backs. He has great length and elite speed. His recruitment was a sudden and swift victory for the Sooners as he committed at the spring game following an unofficial visit to Norman less than a month prior. The Sooners will have to remain aggressive with him as there will undoubtedly be school who will still push for him.

Ryan Watts – Cornerback – 6’2.5″ 185 lbs – Little Elm, TX – OU Commit – Watts was one of the first offers that the new defensive staff threw out once they arrived in Norman and the Sooners got their man as Ryan committed to OU following the spring game. Watts is a physical ‘big’ corner who has the ability to reroute receivers off the line and has the obvious length to disrupt passes in coverage. Another ‘A’ list commit for OU and as things stand right now, this should wrap up the corners in the class.

Major Burns – Safety – 6’1.5″ 176 lbs. – Baton Rouge, LA – Burns, a one time Texas A&M commit is a hot name in Sooner circles as one of the top targets at safety and there is no reason to believe that things are not currently trending in OU’s favor. Burns loved his visit to Norman and he believes he could be a difference maker early on in his career should he choose to head to Norman. LSU is a player here, but I really like where OU stands at this time. Burns put up some impressive numbers at the Nike Camp in New Orleans: 4.58 40-yard dash, 4.51 20-yard shuttle, 35.8-inch vertical and a 38-foot Power Ball throw, SPARQ rating of 96.69.

Bryson Washington – Safety – 6’2″ 195 lbs – Houston, TX – Washington was in attendance at the OU Spring Game and by all accounts, the Sooners really made a huge impression on him. Following that trip, he announced a top two of Oklahoma and Texas. As Super K has mentioned, right now, the Sooners are in a very strong spot and if he were to choose his school today, we believe it would be OU. However, an official visit to Texas in late June remains on tap as Washington is currently sticking with his plan to announce his commitment on July 4th. That timing obviously seems to favor Texas as they will get the last official visit prior to his announcement. The Sooners would be wise to continue to strengthen their relationship with Bryson in the meantime and attempt to get out to an insurmountable lead as that visit looms.

Jacobe Covington – Defensive Back – 6’1″ 193 lbs – Scottsdale, AZ – Covington made a return trip to Norman for an official visit for the Spring Game. All signs pointed to an impending commitment to the Sooners. He has spoken about his fondness for the Sooners program and his mother absolutely loved the visit. That did not happen and while the Sooners remain in a very good spot with Covington, they continue to aggressively pursue both of the DBs listed above as there seem to be some people around Jacobe who are encouraging him to take some additional trips prior to making a commitment. If the Sooners number remains at a total of four DBs for this class, one of these recruits is going to not have a spot when it all comes down and Covington hesitating may cost him.

Lathan Ransom – Safety – 6’2″ 200 lbs – Tucson, AZ – Ransom visited Norman for the Spring Game and enjoyed his time. He said all the right things about the Sooners following the trip, but he also made it clear that he is nowhere near a decision and has a bunch of other trips planned. OU will continue to put in the work here, but the reality of the matter is, there probably will not be a spot left when the time rolls around for him to make his commitment. However, it is recruiting and strange things happen and the Sooners will continue to work here.

Kelee Ringo – Cornerback – 6’2″ 200 lbs – Scottsdale, AZ – I only put his name on this list so I wouldn’t be asked about him. He is a phenomenal defensive back, that is clear. However, it’s pretty simple: Kelee likes to be recruited. He likes to say things on Twitter to encourage people to woo him. He knows talking about OU will get him some attention. Until he shows up in Norman, I cannot view him as a serious target and I don’t see a visit to Norman on his schedule at this point.

Brian Branch – Safety – 6’0″ 182 – Tyrone, GA – Alabama Commit – This was a wild one. Following the OU visit, Branch announced he was making a commitment. Super K spoke to him and his family and they indicated that OU was very much in play. Then on the day of the announcement, Riley flashed the eyes (Ryan Watts) and we let you know it was not Branch. The odd part was, if we had not checked, as some others didn’t, we easily would have assumed it was Branch based on his prior conversation with K. Now, as K mentioned previously, this one may not be over as Bama may ask him to camp and that could rub him the wrong way. We will keep an eye on this but right now, he is a Bama commit and the Sooners may fill up prior to anything happening between him and Bama.

Other Names to Know:

Joshua Eaton – Defensive back – 6’2″ 175 lbs – Houston, TX – Eaton has set up a few visits to Norman only to see them fall through for various reasons (The last one being Easter weekend). He is an elite DB, one of our favorites in the country this year, and the Sooners will remain in contact but until a visit to Norman occurs (he does have some connections to the state with his uncle) the Sooners will remain observers in this recruitment.

Ramon Henderson – ATH – 6’2″ 183 lbs – Bakersfield, CA – OU corners coach Roy Manning went out to California last week and extended an offer to Henderson. We don’t have a lot of info on his recruitment right now, but I added him to the list as that offer shows me that there is something there that the Sooners like and they felt the need to offer. We will be working to get more on him, but he is a name to keep an eye on regardless as this is a fresh offer.

Marco Domio – Cornerback – 6’2″ 190 lbs – Blinn College – JUCO – Domio holds an OU offer and the reason I added him to the list as a name to watch is because should there be further attrition at OU in the defensive backfield, I believe they will be looking for JUCO kids to come in and provide immediate help. Right now, he is the only JUCO DB to hold an offer.

The Bedenbaugh Effect
– Super K

Here is where I have to highlight the difference between having an elite coach in terms of effort on the recruiting trail, ability to identify talent and the confidence and know how to develop and someone who simply doesn’t do that.

The Sooners have missed on a few offensive linemen in this cycle. But throughout the cycle, Bedenbaugh has been aggressively evaluating guys, making a number of offers and actually recruiting them. So, even when he misses on guys you know a couple things…

1. He’s got plenty of targets around the country that he’s not only evaluated, offered but is also actually recruiting.

2. You know darn well whether he gets his first offer or his fifth offer, the man is going to have a nasty offensive line and he’s going to churn out draft picks.

This type of coach is what the Sooners need across the board. There is a glaring difference between Bedenbaugh’s recruiting style and development and that of perhaps another position group or groups.

And, I personally believe Riley recognizes this and last year’s moves were the beginning of building this type of recruitment and development across the board.

Jahari Rogers | The Latest + The Grinch Effect
– Super K

I spoke at length with to 2020 DB and Sooners legacy, Jahari Rogers.

Rogers talked to me about schools he plans on taking official visits to including Florida, Texas, and Arkansas. But what was clearly missing in the conversation was any mention of Oklahoma.

After a bit of discussion I asked him where things stood with Oklahoma and he promptly said, “no comment”.

I pressed him a bit on it and he did speak off the record about it.

The bottom line was that it appears the Sooners and Rogers have parted ways. At least that seems to be Rogers’ impression of the Sooners’ and their recruitment of him.

I should note that, Rogers is a very talented player and I believe the OU staff knows that. What this shift away from Rogers probably tells us is just how confident OU is in who they’ve got committed and who they expect to get.

In other words, it sounds like they know they’re full and even have a back up prospect or two that could take a spot that doesn’t fill up according to plan.

Here I want to add a quick note about Grinch. In speaking with multiple defensive backs about Grinch, I continue to hear glowing reports about the impression he makes on these players.

I remember Bryson Washington saying something like…

Grinch is a dog. He’s a serious guy. He knows what he wants. He’s like 6’4.

I specifically noted him saying Grinch is 6’4 because Grinch isn’t 6’4. But the fact that a big guy like Bryson (and Bryson is a big safety!) sees Grinch as 6’4 tells you how he perceives Grinch – that Grinch appears to these players bigger than he really is.

Quick Hitter | Visitor Update
Charlie S

Was in touch with 2021 wide receiver Latrell Neville (Missouri City, TX) in regards to his scheduled visit this weekend which I mentioned previously.

Neville let me know that he will not be able to make it to Norman for the planned trip as his family had an emergency and his mother had to rush down to New Orleans.

As you know, the Sooners will have five official visitors on campus. 2020 Running Back Seth McGowan, 2020 OT Noah Nelson, 2020 OL Jonah Monehim, 2020 LB Kourt Williams, and 2020 OL Geirean Hatchett.

Latrell told me he will absolutely be rescheduling an unofficial this summer and hopes to get back up to Norman Sooner rather than later.

Updates | Evans & George
– Super K

*** I was at North Shore HS today to see 2020 RB Zach Evans and his teammate an another Sooners target, 2020 OL, Damieon George.

Zach was out sick today so I didn’t speak to him but George told me something interesting. He said that the likelihood of he and Zach playing together in college is, “100%”.

George says he does want to get up to Norman this summer. He hasn’t been to OU yet and I think the Sooners will absolutely need to get both he and Zach on campus together for officials because it doesn’t sound like Georgia (and possibly even Zach) will take this decision out too much longer.

Right now the teams to beat appear to be Texas, LSU and Alabama.

While at practice I saw Dennis Simmons out there. Assuming he was by to see George, Evans and 2021 WR, Shadrach Banks.

I think this weekend is going to tell OU a lot about whether they need to push for Evans and George.

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