Even as OU fortunes have changed over the years, recruiting has always played a big part of OU success. Of course Barry’s hook or by crook antics are stories that legends are made of. Even John Blake who eventually replaced the king was able to use the OU tradition to attract players that could overcome his inability to coach. No small task I might add.
One of those players that stands out to me was a four star athlete out of Midland Lee named Josh Norman. Norman ignored the talk that the OU ship was taking on water and might not recover. Josh Norman was the first of several blue-chip players that Bob Stoops would use to turn around the football program that had hit rock bottom during the Schnelenberer/Blake era.
To this day, I give Josh Norman a great deal of credit for doing his part to turn around OU’s fortunes.
In my opinion college football coaches can use four sources to attract stud-athletes. The first is to sell a football program’s tradition. The second is to impress kids with improved facilities. The third reason is to promise players that will play early. The fourth is to cheat.
OSU has proven that the facilities angle does work for a spell. Of course having T. Boone around to grease the skids cannot be undersold either. Unfortunately, the OSU facilities advantage has diminished as other Big 12 teams have upped the ante. Cheating has also become much more challenging with the advent of the Internet. Keeping these players quiet is much easier said than done..
The OU Class of 2017 fulfills all the four qualities of a great recruiting class. First off OU has a tradition that is second to none. Next, OU is in on the verge of having incredible facilities that will impress high school recruits. Thirdly, OU is recruiting players today that embrace a challenge which removes the playing early barrier.
Because of the first thee advantages cheating for OU these days is not necessary.
Back in the day Josh Norman led the Sooners out of the darkness and into the light. The latest OU recruiting class is proof positive of this fact.
Rivals100’s Class of 2017 Top Ten…
Rivals100 Class of 2017 OU commitments
10 four star recruits
2 three star recruits
Trajan Bandy/DB…Miami, Florida/four stars
Robert Barnes/DB…Southlake, TX/four stars
Justin Broiles/DB….Oklahoma City/four stars
Tre Brown/DB….Tulsa, OK/four stars
Levi Draper/LB…..Collinsville, OK/four stars
Charleston Rambo/WR…Cedar Hil, TX/four stars
Cedarian Lamb/WR…Richmond, TX/four stars
Jalen Reagor/WR…Waxahachie, TX/four stars
Tyrese Robinson/OL…..McKinney, TX/four stars
Chris Robison/QB…..Mesquite, TX/four stars
Marcelias Sutton/Ath….Scranton, PA/three stars
Grant Culcaterra/Ath…Rancho Santa Margarita, CA/three stars