2021 Recruiting Update 4-27
Class Size: 25 (NFL departures and transfers)
1 QB, 2 RBs, 4 OL, 4 WRs, 5 DL, 4 LB, 5 DBs
Commitments (highest ranking attained by one service listed)
1. Cody Jackson 6-1, 180, 4.4 WR Texas 4 Star/Top 100 – Jackson is incredibly close to Cede Lamb considers him a mentor. Jackson has excellent speed and is an elite WR in Texas
2. Ethan Downs 6-4, 245, 4.7 DE/OLB OK 4 Star/Top 100 – Downs had a huge spring camp tour last year and received offers from almost every SEC and Big 12 power. He had a fantastic junior year where he just dominated.
3. Cullen Montgomery 6-5, 320, 5.4 OG/OT Texas 4 Star/Top 250 – Cullen was one of the first OL offers by BnB and is part of an extremely talented OL class in Texas for 2021. Monty probably projects at OG. He’s extremely physical and mobile for a big man and is already talking about enrolling early.
4. Jordan Mukes 6-3, 200, 4.6 DB OK 3 Star – Amazing athlete who just started playing football last year. Has received an amazing amount of offers including Tenn, Notre Dame, Oregon, and ATM. Massively under rated right now.
2022 Commits (Have to track 2022 now)
1. Kobie McKenzie 6-3, 225, 4.6 LB (Top 50 Nationally) – Verbaled to OU in January and gives OU their potentially highest rated LB recruit since Caleb Kelly. He’s going to be huge presence for OU in recruiting in 2021 and 2022. His film is just elite as a high school sophomore. McKenzie is making a lot of noise about reclassifying for the 2021 class.
Among the numerous weird/trivial things about our national quarantine is the the impact that it has had on football recruiting. This spring should have seen a flurry of action from OU and everyone else. Instead, most everyone who is not tOSU, USC, or strangely UNC has seen their recruiting efforts come to a screeching halt. For OU, no spring practice in March and unofficial visits from across the country. No spring game and no fireworks from verbals and official visits in April. And it certainly looks like the earliest return of normal recruiting might be June 1st or more likely July 1st with August 1st looking like the most realistic date. OU has made as much progress as possible during the downtime and in fact productively used the time to gain a massive jump on 2022 offers. But make no mistake about it, OU was about to go on a serious run in recruiting and when recruiting returns that run is poised to start up again. Other than 2022, the downtime also allowed OU to go back to some highly rated kids and effectively start over especially new OLB/DE coach Jamar Cain.
OU did add Jordan Mukes when OU finally offered due to the daily offers he was receiving from Power5 schools. Mukes was hoping to see OU in person and receive his offer, but that was just not possible. What is OU getting in Mukes? On film, he’s the prototype safety for the Speed D. Length, athleticism able to disrupt passing lines and provide run support. In addition, he’s very strong in pass coverage able to disrupt the go route/jump ball passing game to big WRs that has given OU’s smaller DB corps so many problems the last few years.
The other positive recruiting story has to be the huge visit OU got from Caleb Williams before recruiting shut down. OU needed to knock that visit out of the park and over 3 days appeared to grab a significant lead for the much ballyhooed near consensus number one QB in the country.
Shortly after the Williams visit, OU received a second pair of emoji eyes still unclaimed. But the heavy suscipion is that they belong to Williams.
In addition, in about early April Twitter blew up with all kinds of traffic from OU coaches and Caleb Williams and other OU targets all using the hashtag the Serious3. With no sports news to follow, the hype on the Serious3 exploded. Which recruits are the Serious3 became threads all over the Sooner internet? I’ll mention below who might be the Serious 3.
On the downside, recruiting evil counterpart tOSU has been a recruiting machine getting verbals from OU target RB TreVeyon Henderson and flipping almost OU verbal DB Jantzen Dunn. With all their NFL success, it’s really hard for Grinch to go up against the Buckeyes for DB talent right now and the Buckeyes seem to love Grinch’s evaluations.
Projecting OU’s top 20 targets and OU’s class right now is very tough because OU has so many tremendous offers out there and without visits occurring you don’t know who is really serious about OU or not. But trust me, some fireworks are coming and they might define how good a class OU is going to get this year.
Top 20 Possible Targets
1. Caleb Williams 6-1, 200, 4.55 QB DC Area Five Star – All the focus at QB is here after the disappointing decommit by BVG. Williams Junior year film is just awesome. Very Mahome-ish. Right now Caleb is holding the only golden ticket at QB for 2021. And you know LR is him know that he has that special status. OU’s visit was a huge win, and Williams is trending to OU by almost every source. Look for an early Summer decision. And Williams is going to be a centerpiece of OU’s recruiting efforts on both sides of the ball. Serious3 member likelihood = 95%
2. Camar Wheaton 6-0, 190, 4.4 RB Texas Five Star – Right now the number one RB in Texas. Demarco Mission 1. Camar seems disinterested in all the recruiting hype and barely has a social media presence. OU got a critical visit from Wheaton right before things shut down. He’s been to Norman a lot, and Murray is building the rapport. Serious3 member likelihood = 10%
3. Bryce Foster 6-4, 320, 5.2 OG Texas Five Star – Has UT connections, Aggie parents, but OU is going all out for this monstrous attacking OG. OU got a visit from Bryce right before the shutdown and there’s massive momentum that OU has grabbed a lead with the talented OG. Once things open up, ATM has to throw everything possible at this recruiting, but this recruiting battle might just be over. Serious3 member likelihood = 10%
4. Mario Williams 5-10, 175, 4.35 WR FL Four Star/Top 100 – The speed WR from Florida that OU needs. Simmons has been all over this kid and OU appears to have developed a big lead. Might be the best small fast WR in the class. Serious3 member likelihood = 80%
5. Latrell McCutchin 6-1, 175, 4.5 CB Texas Four Star Top 100 – The former Bama verbal has left the Tide and appears to be firmly in OU’s grasp for a verbal commitment. He’s exactly what Grinch wants at CB. If OU grabs an early verbal, then OU will have to fend off the entire SEC all fall. Serious3 member likelihood = 10%
6. Christian Leary 5-9, 180, 4.35 WR Four Star Top 200 – The other Florida speedster that OU loves at WR. Leary like Williams has sub 4.4 legit track speed. He might be the top slot WR prospect in the country on film. If OU could team him with Mario Williams along with their other WR/QB talent, Big 12 defenses could be in more trouble. He’s deciding June 4th and can OU grab a kid from the SEC powers without one visit to Norman? Serious3 member likelihood = 60%
7. Isaiah Johnson 6-1, 180, 4.4 CB WV 4 Star/Top 100 – after a very positive year one with the OU CBs, Manning is going after big time kids. Johnson is one of them. OU just needs to connect Manning’s long distance relationship with a homerun visit to Norman.
8. Kendal Daniels 6-4, 195, 4.6 OLB OK Three Star (for now) – After Downs the number two player in state. His Junior film shows this physical sideline to sideline presence. OU thinks he’s a 6-4, 225 WILL LB in college. Daniels offer list blew up this spring including LSU, Bama, and Clemson. The recruiting world is comparing favorably to number 8 draft pick Isaiah Simmons. OU is not going to let Daniels leave the state without a huge fight and is pitching a hybrid “never leave the field” type role for Daniels. He’s going to be a top 100 kid before evaluations are done.
9. AJ Green 5-11, 180, 4.4 CB/RB 3 Stars Tulsa – Green really want to be recruited at RB, but OU initially viewed him at CB where his size and frame and elite track speed really play. Is Green open to signing with OU and letting the staff slot him where he is best suited? Is a shot at RB enough to get Green to sign? Green could easily end this debate with an awesome Senior year at RB.
10. Dallas Turner 6-4, 235, 4.6 OLB/DE Florida Four Star Top 50 – OU’s efforts in Florida have been paying off with starting defenders Jaden Davis and Nik Bonnito along with the hype around 1st rd WR pick Hollywood Brown. Turner has been paying attention and has OU firmly in his top five. He’s from Hollywood’s HS (where they have a mural of Marquis in the hallway). Grinch/Cain/Odom are all over this kid. Who projects at possibly the OLB spot or has the frame to be a terror at DE. Yet another kid where OU just needs to connect the relationship with a great visit.
11. Smael Mondon 6-4, 220, 4.6 OLB Georgia Four Star Top 50 – Odom’s recruiting name is getting bigger and bigger nationally. The 1st rd selection of Kenneth Murray is only going to help. Mondon is a fantastic LB prospect able to dominate the run game, provide pass rush off the edge and drop into coverage. Mondon really likes OU but has to get him on campus
12. Shambre Jackson 6-5, 260, 4.8 DE/DT Florida Four Star Top 200 – More Florida recruiting efforts that might potentially pay off. Jackson has a great frame and mobility. He could easily end up as a 6-5 290 DE/DT in the OU system. Strong family connection to OU that will make any official visit to OU an interesting move to watch.
13. Shemar Turner 6-4, 270, 4.8 DE/DT Texas Four Star Top 100 – OU’s identified Turner as the top DL prospect in Texas for their recruiting efforts. He’s been to Norman a number of times. He’s at Desoto which has not always been kind to OU in the past, but OU’s really working Turner hard. Perhaps the number one OU v UT recruiting battle for this fall.
14. Nathan Rawlins- Kibonge 6-7, 244, 4.8 DE Oregon Four Star Top 200 – A WSU basketball recruit, but Jamar Cain has been tracking this kid and his football film is excellent. The most impressive thing for a 6-7 kid is how comfortable and effective he is when he’s shaded inside. He’s not just an edge perimeter player. His frame could easily carry 280+ and you’d have a Calais Campbell like DE. His OU visit got cancelled by the shutdown.
15. Tommi Hill 6-2, 190, 4.55 Safety Florida Four Star Top 250 – Teammate of Leary’s and a dominating playmaker for their defense. He’s constantly around the ball and reading pass lanes and making interceptions. He looks like a great fit for the bigger- longer safeties that Grinch wants for the Sooner D. If you could add Hill, Mukes, and Daniels you’ve gone a long way to adding serious athleticism/length to the back end of the Sooner defense.
16. Jahlil Farooq/Malcolm Johnson 6-2, 190, 4.45 or 6-1, 185, 4.35 WRs Top 150 Maryland – Two WRs that are strongly mentioning following Caleb Williams to college. Farooq is more of a classic flanker WR while Johnson has absurd speed for his size. Farooq was going to try and visit with Caleb Williams in March but was unable to make it.
17. J. Michael Sturdivant 6-3, 180, 4.45 WR TX 3 stars – Somehow J. Michael had been under the radar despite having a huge junior year. He’s visited OU already and OU looks to make him a focus. Yes there are so many top WRs in play for OU this year.
18. Reuben Fatheree 6-8, 300, 5.3 OT Texas Four Star/Top 250 – BnB loves this Houston area OT. Physically kind of reminds you of a more mobile Orlando Brown. Same amazing size and wingspan.
19. Kevin Gillam 6-4, 255, 4.8 DT/DT Maryland Four Star Top 150 – Another DL target from Maryland area with connections back to Caleb Williams. Gilliam probably projects inside for OU where his elite quick burst and power would give guards/centers fits as he vaults upfield. He looks like a LB at 255 on his current frame so going to 280+ would seem easy.
20. Isaiah Coe 6-3, 300, 4.9 DT JUCO / Jamond Gordon 6-4, 285, 4.8 DT JUCO – OU’s already made two key JUCO DT offers. Coe is Perion Winfrey’s teammate and flashes the same kind of dominating NT presence. Gordon was an SEC recruit out of HS but did not qualify. His film is also very impressive and he has a host of SEC offers plus OU.
21. Junior Colson 6-2, 215, 4.55 OLB Tenn Four Star/Top250. Teammate of Reggie Grimes and has been making a habit of getting players from Tenn lately. Colson on film is making plays all over the field showing excellent speed in pursuit. He’s talking up OU on Twitter so hopefully Coach Odom can get him to Norman before a decision is made. Colson was ready to visit OU this spring before the shutdown.
Fantasy Land Five
Okay, OU has been mentioned in vague manner with these elite Five Star kids. I would not say OU is in a top five but I could see some visits happening, maybe. Even one off this list would be a massive win for OU.
1. Tristan Leigh 6-6, 280, 5.1 OT Virginia – Another player that could see a huge bump for OU if Caleb Williams verbals to OU.
2. Emeka Egbuka 6-2, 190, 4.45 WR Washington state – Dennis Simmons has been working this player very hard for over a year. OU could end up getting a visit and battling tOSU (yes them again). Five Star WRs love Five Star QBs.
3. JT Tuimolauo 6-4, 275, 4.7 DE/DT Washington state – Jamar Cain is working this recruit hard. Again, I could see an OU visit happening. JT would be an absolute monster at the two interior spots for the OU DL. Caleb Williams has mentioned that he wants to talk to JT about playing together
4. Amarius Mims 6-7, 310, 5.2 OT Georgia – Mims has also mentioned interest in playing football with the Williamses (Mario and Caleb). But OU stealing a five star OT from UGA and the rest of the SEC. Not very likely.
5. Korey Foreman 6-5, 260, 4.7 DE California – He has decommitted from Clemson citing distance and wanting to take visits. Jamar Cain has some connections in this region and will try and get OU a visit. USC is the new favorite.
Top 10 Evaluations by OU (kids not highly ranked but look great on film. The Dontae Mannings of 2021)
1. Jabril McNeil 6-4, 225, 4.6 LB NC 3 Stars – McNeil’s film and offer literally came out of nowhere. He’s playing MIKE LB for his HS and I think that’s where OU projects him. He’s a huge physical presence at LB but shows excellent sideline to sideline quickness and good coverate drops. His frame and athleticism are likely to start generating a lot of offers.
2. Daymon David 6-2, 180, 4.5 DB Virginia 3 Stars – Probably more of a safety target for the Sooners but Davis looks like a 4 star Top 100 type kid.
3. Tobechi Okoli 6-5, 265, 4.9 DE/DT KC area 3 Stars – Kansas/KC area has been good to OU the last two years sending Marcus Hicks and Noah Arinze to the Sooners. Okoli could be the next player. He’s just started playing football and has a huge frame to add weight while keeping his agility/speed.
4. Danny Stutsman 6-3, 210, 4.6 ILB Florida 3 Stars – Excellent film from Stutsman has him a top LB target. Probably a WILL or a MIKE in the OU system. His coverage skills are a key highlight.
5. Bralyn Oliver 6-2, 190,4.6 3 Stars – Verbaled to Louisville. We will see if OU can get him on campus when visits start back up.
6. Tiaoalii Savea 6-5, 270, 4.8 DT/OT Vegas 4 Stars – Savea is an interesting prospect because despite his potential at OT I think that he might be a better fit for OU on the DL. His frame and agility could allow for him to be a 6-5, 290+ interior DL for the Sooners.
7. Chase Hattley 6-3, 205, 4.55 Safety NC 3 Stars – Might be Grinch’s best safety evaluation out of nowhere. Hattley plays a critical center field role in coverage and run support. Shows excellent ball skills in the air as well. Looks like a must take.
8. Damond Harmon 6-1, 175. 4.4 CB Virginia 3 Stars – Grinch must have spent hours going over tape from this region because he keeps finding potential stars. Harmon looks to be badly under rated as a play making CB.
9. Tommy Akingbestote 6-4, 255, 4.8 DT Maryland 3 Stars – Another DL prospect from the Northern Virginia/Maryland/DC area. Akingbestote projects more of an inside DE/DT for the Sooners with an explosive attacking interior presence and a frame that could easily carry 280+.
10. Tyrion Ingram Dawkins 6-5, 270, 4.8 DT/DE South Carolina – OU keeps targeting these long framed mobile big DE and that they can easily move inside to the DE/DT spots on their defense.
11. Zyun Reeves 6-7, 245 DE NC 3 stars – This kid is so raw at DE but he might have a 7-3 wingspan. His arm extension means he’s always hitting the OL first and he’s almost grabbing the QB over the OL several times in highlights.
Class prediction 22 spots
QB: Caleb Williams (1)
RB: Camar Wheaton, (2)
WR: Mario Williams, Cody Jackson, J. Michael Sturdivant, Christian Leary, (6)
OL: Cullen Montgomery, Reuben Fatheree, Bryce Foster, (9)
DL/DT: Shemar Turner, Isaiah Coe (11)
DE/OLB: Ethan Downs, Dallas Turner, Tobechi Okoli, (14)
LB: Kobie McKenzie, Kendal Daniels, Smael Mondon (17)
Safeties: Jordan Mukes, Tommi Hill, Daymon David (20)
CBs: Isaiah Johnson, Latrell McCutchin, (22)
To recap it’s a class with 4 five stars players by at least one service.
13 four stars by at least one service
5 who are currently 3 stars (Mukes, Coe- unranked right now but looks to be the top JUCO DT so a high 4 star once the services catch up, Okoli, Montgomery,David).
On 247, it’s a class with about 298 points (Coe/McKenzie being unranked makes it hard), but that is good enough for a top five class the last five years. On Rivals is about 2700 points again good enough for a top five class.