Weekend Open Post | March 29th – 31st

News From the Portal | OU Pursuing DT
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 24, 2024

Been in contact with Indiana defensive tackle Philip Blidi over the course of the past year since he entered the portal out of Texas Tech last cycle.

This morning he let me know that OU has been in contact and he has an offer from the Sooners. He tells me he is working with OU on planning a visit.

Blidi (6’3 295) left Texas Tech and landed at Indiana for the ’23 season and he re-entered the portal recently as a grad transfer after one year as a Hoosier.

He had 30 tackles at Indiana last year.

With the medical retirement of Jacob Lacey, the Sooners can certainly use an experienced big body who can play in the middle of the defensive line. If nothing else, this shows that the Sooners are already actively turning over rocks in the portal.

I will keep you posted on if the visit comes together.

Sourced Team Notes | Secondary
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 25, 2024

Spoke to a source this morning and they brought up a couple points about the secondary I thought you would all enjoy.

***First, source noted that Cornerback Jacobe Johnson is really being pushed by the coaching staff. During the first week of practice, it sounds like Johnson was the recipient of some tough love in terms of coach Valai being on him after every rep. Source noted that OU has a lot of belief in Johnson’s potential and they are not wasting any opportunities to coach him up. Sounds like they really want to get Johnson in a position to make a large impact this season at corner.

***Another guy who source pointed out was true freshman safety Jaydan Hardy. Source noted that Hardy ‘knows football’ and he is making the most of his opportunities. Source is not saying they expect Hardy to be a guy who has a huge impact on the team defensively right from the rip, but they did say they could see him carving out an important role on special teams. Was told he has been all business throughout winter training and early on in spring camp and that has not gone unnoticed.

Sourced Team Notes | Defensive Tackle
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 26, 2024

Spoke with a source and got with James to compare notes based on what he saw yesterday in regard to the interior defensive line.

***As I mentioned last week, source noted that the defensive line is holding its own. Last night source mentioned again that the interior group is doing some nice work. What source did not say is that “this guy or that guy was a menace”, or “man, so and so really was unstoppable tonight.” To this point, there has been a lack of spectacular plays from the defensive line…and that could be expected as it was only day two of padded practices. Still, this is an area we will keep an eye on.

***One guy that stood out to James was Markus Strong. Strong was a guy that we had sources point to during winter training as a guy who had made some strides and there was some excitement around him, so it was nice to get some corroboration on that from James’ own eyes. James said he is a legit 6’3 and he has that ‘look’ about him when you think of SEC interior defensive linemen.

***As James noted to me in our conversation, Brent and Bates are “Trying like hell to get Gerald McCoy or Tommie Harris”. Do they have anything close right now? That is yet to be seen, but sources continue to speak about the potential of the young guys as being difference makers, but as source noted last week, they are still being taught some lessons by the OU offensive line. James also saw a couple times where the OL had their way with the young guys, but he did say that they (Stone and Jackson) never quit and were constantly looking to correct where they went wrong on their next reps.

***Gracen Halton returned to practice yesterday and seemed like his normal talkative self according to James. So that is a positive sign. Ashton Sanders was still running alongside Terry with the ones for the most part, but yesterday’s practice, as previously mentioned, was more of a mix and match with different combinations and no real tells on the rest of the depth chart as of right now.

***Both source and James do see a need for an additional guy or two on the interior who could come in and play this year as you can see a difference in play between DaJon Terry and the majority of the rest of the guys in the room as they are all so young and inexperienced. Sounds like there is talent in the interior defensive line room, it just needs more seasoning.

James will have full coverage of what he witnessed in the coming days.

Portal DT Philip Blidi | Quick Hitter
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 26, 2024

As I mentioned earlier this week HERE, the Sooners are pursuing Indiana Grad transfer Defensive Tackle Philip Blidi.

Blidi let me know that the visit has come together and he plans on being in Norman for a visit on April 19th.

I asked him how the communication with OU has been going over the last few days and he said “I Can’t wait to get to Norman. The staff’s got me ready to run through a wall!”. So…safe to say there is some excitement there for Philip.

He has a couple other visits scheduled prior to getting to OU in Arizona and Washington. That is all he has set right now. LSU is one spot I would keep an eye on in regard to getting a visit as well.

’25 DT Landon Rink | Trending
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 27, 2024

’25 DL Landon Rink will announce his commitment on April 3rd.

Rink, a Texas legacy was a guy that OU pursued heavily this cycle.

He will be choosing between Ohio State, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma.

Just spoke to K and we have this one trending away from OU and to the field at a 62.47 clip.

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Pair of New ’25 Offers
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 27, 2024

Oklahoma sent out a pair of interesting offers to recruits in the ’25 class.

***First, Todd Bates correctly reading the writing on the wall in regard to his pursuit of Landon Rink, extended an offer to Defensive Lineman Jarquez Carter out of Newberry, Florida.

Carter (6’2 284) holds more than two dozen offers from power programs across the country including Bama, Georgia, Texas, Florida State, Michigan, Notre Dame, Penn State and basically every program worth their salt.

OU is a little late on this one, so it will be interesting to see if they can gain any traction here.

***When it comes to the next interesting offer sent out, there is no mystery in respect to OU gaining traction. OU offered ’25 in-state TE/DE Dakotah Terrell out of Pocola, OK.

Terrell made his way to campus today and picked up the offer in person. He has really seen his recruiting profile go through a significant rise of late as a Michigan offer has put him on the map for out-of-state programs.

OU has been communicating with him for a little bit now, but they have recently ramped up their pursuit, and getting him on campus and offering him at the same time should leave a lasting impression on him.

I am of the opinion that this one will come down to OU offering him as an athlete and eventually landing him as a tight end. Would not hate to see a 6’9 EDGE out there, but he has some really nice ball skills and I like his upside as a massive target for OU QBs.

We will see how this shakes out, but a source I spoke with was very confident in OU’s chances and they expect Terrell to be on campus several additional times throughout the spring.

Spring Practice Viewing Session | Quick Takes from James
– Charlie S – Posted on: March 27, 2024

James was out at practice tonight, passed along a few quick observations while he was waiting for interviews.

He will have more detail in his write up on Friday

James noted that Gavin Sawchuk went through warmup drills, but that is all he really noticed of him, that gave Barnes, Franklin and Hicks a chance to shine and Zavier Robinson saw some good reps as well.

Per James: “Jovantae Barnes looks really good, better than at any point last year”.

At safety, Peyton Bowen went through all the warmup drills but James didn’t notice him doing much in team stuff. That leads to Jaydan Hardy is getting a lot of run and making the most of his opportunity.

Was good to see Jayden Rowe getting work in, he looks healthy and Makari Vickers and Dez Malone had some really strong reps.

Per James: “RSJ Looks like a million bucks, looks very free and confident.”

Billy Bowman is giving instructions and helping coach kids up but he is chomping at the bit to get in the lineup and playing football.

On the offensive line, he noted that the 1’s started out today with Tarquin (LT) Ozaeta (LG) Everett (C) Nwaiwu (RG) and Taylor (RT). – Troy Everett did go down and needed to be helped off the field, we cannot speculate on the injury. James did not notice Jacob Sexton, but not sure if he just missed him or what.

Per James: “Heath Ozaeta is a player. He looks like a totally different kid than last year.”

James took a bunch of video that I will get up for the community and he will have a full rundown of what he he saw later in the week as I mentioned.

Recruiting Notes | Trenton Wilson, Briehler, & Terrell
– Super K – Posted on: March 28, 2024

A few quick recruiting notes here…

***As you know, the Sooners are all in on 2025 DL, Trenton Wilson (Upper Marlboro, MD) who hails from the same school as Sooners WR Jalil Farooq.

Wilson seemed to really enjoy his most recent visit. Source confirmed he will be back for an official. I’m told the schools to keep on eye on against OU in this one are TAMU and Penn State. Also, possibly one to watch would be in-state Maryland.

Sooners will be in this one till the end.

***Also, Sooners 2025 DL target, Kole Briehler (Princeton, NJ) dropped his top three and announced his will be taking officials to those three schools which include OU, Ohio State and Stanford.

Charlie has mentioned that OU sources have felt pretty good about this one but Ohio State recently entered the picture and immediately jumped into his top three. I did check with an Ohio State source and said they don’t feel like there is a clear cut leader right now.

I’d imagine it’s OU with Ohio State in striking distance and the difference will come down to the official visits.

***Lastly, Charlie mentioned yesterday that the Sooners offered in-state ATH, Dakotah Terrell (Pocola, OK).

I’m told Terrell met with both the offensive and the defensive staff but I can confirm what Charlie noted, right now they’re leaning towards an offensive projection. But that isn’t set in stone.

Folks around Terrell say that he needs a year in a program as he is just scratching the surface and then things will get figured out.

But it sounds like the Sooners could have a really nice piece of clay to work with here if they’re able to land him.

If you would like to read our extensive sourced notes from yesterday’s scrimmage, please check the Donor Board.