Stay up to date with Oklahoma football recruiting with the latest news and notes and analysis in the daily edition of DieHards’ Wagon Wheels. In this edition, we look at the offensive part of Oklahoma’s 2018 class.
Oklahoma’s offensive class is nearly set
The Sooners did the brunt of their offensive recruiting work in the spring and summer, and it has held up with a week remaining until the early signing period.
There’s only one potential spot open for an offensive player and it looks like that one will remain vacant until February. Oklahoma would still like to add one more offensive lineman if it can find the one it likes. If not, the Sooners likely will move that scholarship over to defense.
But in terms of offensive commitments and remaining scholarships available, Oklahoma is in the same situation it’s been in for the last three months. At this point in the recruiting calendar, it’s an enviable spot to be in.
Here’s what the Sooners have in the fold and what remains open. The asterisk (*) indicates players who have given verbal commitments.
Tanner Mordecai* (Midway/Waco, Texas), 4 stars: Mordecai jumped into the class on June 1, about five weeks after Cameron Rising de-committed from Oklahoma and committed to Texas. That may be the Sooners’ best stroke of recruiting luck. Mordecai continues to rise in the national ranking, drawing comparisons to current Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield. He’s also led Waco Midway to within two wins of a state title and a perfect season. He will sign with the Sooners in the early signing period.
Running back (2)
T.J. Pledger* (IMG Academy/Bradenton, Fla.), 4 stars: Pledger is the highest-rated offensive skill player in the Sooners’ current class. He’s the No. 3 all-purpose back and No. 83 overall player in the 247Sports composite ranking. Pledger joined the fold in March and hasn’t wavered. He’s expected to sign in the early period and enroll at Oklahoma in January.
Tavion Thomas* (Dunbar/Dayton, Ohio), 3 stars: Thomas is a bruising running back who could fit the role of closer in the Sooners offense. There’s also the thought the 6-foot-2, 225-pound Thomas could move to linebacker. Either way, he figures to make an early impact for the Sooners. Thomas was one of the last members to take his official visit to Norman, but he’s expected to sign with the Sooners next week.
Offensive line (4)
Brey Walker* (Westmoore/Oklahoma City), 4 stars: Walker was the first to join the class. Nothing attracts players to a class as much as elite talent. The Sooners eye him as the left tackle of the future. Walker has the size and athleticism to fall right in with All-American Orlando Brown. One thing that has changed since November is that Walker is ready to sign. He’ll send in his letter of intent during the early period.
Darrell Simpson* (Northwest/Justin, Texas), 4 stars: Simpson was the last offensive player to commit in this class, giving the pledge in August. Like Walker, Simpson already has the size (336 pounds) and frame (6 feet, 7 inches) desired for the tackle spot. Offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh is attracting some of the best linemen in the country to Norman. Simpson is of that ilk. The Sooners hosted him on campus for the Iowa State game in early October. Expect Simpon’s national letter of intent to arrive during the early signing period.
Tramonda Moore* (Independence Community College/Independence, Kan.), 4 stars: Moore was a 4-star recruit at Oklahoma City’s John Marshall High School in 2015. He wanted to play for the Sooners coming out of high school, and that didn’t waver when he went the junior-college route. The Sooners won’t have to wait long on him. He graduates from Independence Community College this week and will enroll at Oklahoma in January.
Tank Jenkins (Park Crossing/Montgomery, Ala.), 4 stars: Jenkins announced this week that he’ll visit Oklahoma in January. The guard looks like the final target in the class. The No. 14 guard in the 2018 class looks like he’ll decide between Auburn, Louisville, Ole Miss and the Sooners.
Jaquayln Crawford* (Rockdale, Texas), 4 stars: The Sooners went largely with outside-receiver size in the 2017 recruiting class. Crawford seems perfectly fit to start out as a slot receiver in Oklahoma’s offense. He has tremendous speed and quickness. Also, expect him to make an impact as a kick and punt returner. Crawford will sign in the early period and told DieHards he will enroll in school in January.
Jaylon Robinson* (All Saints Episcopal/Fort Worth, Texas), 3 stars: What Robinson offers is blazing speed. When you watch his highlights, you’ll see that simply getting a hand on him is a feat. Robinson will challenge as the fastest player in the class. He’ll sign in the early period.
Kundarrius Taylor* (Ridgeway/Memphis, Tenn.), 3 stars: The Sooners entered the recruitment of Taylor early, and that helped them get a player from Tennessee for the first time in years. He projects as an outside receiver. Taylor has a lot of upside. His size cannot be coached. He’s expected to sign in the early period.
Treveon Johnson* (Brenham, Texas), 3 stars: The 6-1, 180-pound Johnson is an under-the-radar recruit. The only other Power 5 Conference offers he holds are from TCU, Texas Tech, Minnesota and Oregon State, plus a recent one from Arkansas. He’s shown the ability to be a physical receiver. But it’ll be interesting to see how long it takes him to fit into Oklahoma’s offense. Johnson is expected to sign in the early period.
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