Tag:Oklahoma State
Posted on: March 11, 2011 11:00 am
 

MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Offer Update

Posted by Bryan Fischer

There's still over a month to go before coaches hit the road and begin to see recruits up close and personal in the May Evaluation period. Although that's usually the time when you'll see scores of scholarship offers head out, many of the MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 are up to double digit offers a little less than a year before Signing Day.

We'll be taking a glance over the next few days at the Top 100 and provide an overview of just what offers are out there for some of the top players in the upcoming class.

Offensive tackle Ryan Brodie (Long Branch, N.J.) 
Offers: Boston College, Cincinnati, UConn, Rutgers, South Carolina.

Running back Coy Brown (Nappanee, Ind.) 
No offers at this time.

Running back Wes Brown (Olney, Md.) 
Offers: Boston College, Cincinnati, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, N.C. State, Penn State, Pitt, Rutgers, Temple, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia.

Quarterback Neal Burcham (Greenbrier, Ark.) 
No offers at this time.

Athlete Joel Caleb (Midlothian, Va.) 
Offers: Alabama, Florida, Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio State, Tennessee, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia.

Defensive end Chris Casher (Mobile, Ala.) 
Committed to Florida State. 
Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Georgia.

Wide receiver Nathan Cole (Memphis, Tenn.) 
Offers: Alabama, Ole Miss.

Safety Landon Collins (Geismar, La.) 
Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Tennessee, Texas A&M.

Quarterback Gray Crow (Clearwater, Fla.) 
Committed to Miami.

Linebacker Derek David (Rockdale, Texas)
Committed to Texas Tech.
Offers: Alabama, Baylor, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, UCLA, USC.

Posted on: March 7, 2011 2:10 pm
 

All about the running backs

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The class of 2012 has several talented running back prospects but there are two from the middle of the country that might receive the lion's share of attention - and for good reason.

Aledo (Texas) running back Johnathan Gray recently narrowed down his list of colleges to Texas, Texas A&M and TCU but it was the Longhorns who were recently given the chance to shine. Gray took an unofficial visit to Austin on Saturday to see Texas go through a spring practice and came away impressed.

“Extremely physical on both sides of the ball. It was great to see everyone fighting for a job,” Gray told VypeDFW. “When you practice like that it makes everyone better.

“I’m glad I had a chance to come down. The offense they’re installing will give them a chance to be physical.”

The MaxPreps 2012 Watch List member rushed for over 3,000 yards and 59 touchdowns as a junior. Texas already landed top running back Malcolm Brown as part of their 2011 class but head coach Mack Brown has put on a full court press (it is March after all) for the speedy running back as of late.

Even Gray's father, former Texas Tech running back James Gray, was impressed on the visit, particularly by the new coaching staff.

“Having a chance to meet the new staff was important because it gave us an idea of which direction they’re going,” the elder Gray said. “Offensively, they’re trying to get back to running the football and that is impressive. Coach Harsin and Coach Applewhite seem to have a good relationship. We also had a chance to meet and talk to returning players. They were excited about the challenge ahead of them.”

A few hundred miles north of Aledo, big name Oklahoma City (Okla.) running back Barry Sanders Jr. is starting to focus on several out-of-state schools with Alabama and Florida State standing out from the pack.

“I went to Alabama’s junior day, enjoyed myself. I haven’t gone to any other schools besides FSU and 'Bama,” Sanders told Noles247.com. “The schools that standout to me are the two that I’ve visited and been on their campus, Florida State and Alabama.

“With both FSU and Alabama, they are both prestigious programs. Alabama is coming off a recent national title win and Florida State has a lot of tradition behind them as well.”

In addition to scholarship offers from the two schools, the 5-foot-10, 190 pound Sanders holds offers from just about every program in the country, including his father's alma matter of Oklahoma State. Not expected to make a decision before the season, Sanders will closely watch what the Crimson Tide and Seminoles do on the field this year before narrowing things down.

“For me, seeing what kind of offense each team runs is just as important as the relationships I have with the coaching staffs," he told the website. "I want to see how Bama looks with the loss of Mark Ingram and Julio Jones. Then with (Christian) Ponder leaving FSU, that will be interesting. It’s something I definitely want to look at with those two teams.”

Expect to hear more from both running backs as the summer camp schedule heats up and they take other unofficial visits.

Posted on: March 1, 2011 11:10 am
 

Oklahoma picks up up in-state wide receiver

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Sometimes, you can make a pretty good guess where certain recruits will end up at. Oklahoma City (Okla.) wide receiver Sterling Shepard was one such recruit in the class of 2012, verbally committing to Oklahoma Monday morning.

Sterling had two uncles play for the Sooners and his late father, Derrick, was a former star receiver for Oklahoma in the mid 1980's.

“This is where my heart is,” Sterling told the Oklahoman. “There is great tradition here. My father, my uncles went here. It was time.”

The 5-foot-10, 175 pound receiver is the third commitment for Oklahoma's class of 2012. Shepard is half of a football legacy duo at Heritage High along side teammate Barry Sanders Jr. and played quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back last year.

One of the top recruits in the state of Oklahoma, Shepard held offers from Clemson, Oklahoma State, Notre Dame and Missouri.

“I went to Oklahoma State, and I talked to some other coaches, and I realized what I wanted,” he said. “I talked about it with my mom and my family in the last couple of days, and they’re all supportive of the decision. It’s close to home, so they can still attend the games. My older sister is at OU, so she’s really happy about it.”

Shepard had 56 receptions for over 1,000 yards and 18 touchdowns last year, helping his team to an undefeated record and a state championship.

Posted on: February 5, 2011 1:33 pm
 

Dream Team grows much larger after Signing Day

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Georgia's 'Dream Team' recruiting class added the final piece of the puzzle Saturday afternoon, receiving the committment of Gulf Coast (Miss.) Community College defensive tackle John Jenkins.

A former Oklahoma State commitment, Jenkins selected Georgia over his other finalist Florida. Miami, Auburn and Oklahoma State were in the running prior to this week for the big 6-foot-4, 340 pounds tackle. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, one of the biggest reasons why he chose the Bulldogs was fellow recruit Ray Drew, MaxPreps' 18th-ranked player overall and a key recruiter of other players to Athens.

The 26th player to sign with Georgia for the class of 2011, Jenkins is expected to make an immediate contribution in the Bulldogs' 3-4 defense as the anchor in the middle. Georgia finished seventh in MaxPreps' class of 2011 team recruiting rankings.
Posted on: February 4, 2011 3:21 pm
 

Big 12 Recruiting Breakdown

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Ranking the Big 12 recruiting classes and breaking them down at the same time.

1. Texas

Overview: Mack Brown earned the title of Mr. February once again, turning a losing season and six new coaches into another top 10 class. Once again, the top talent in Texas is headed to Austin in a class that fills a lot of needs on both sides of the ball. 
Hidden gem: Wide receiver Jaxon Shipley may have a familiar last name but he has the skills to easily pickup where his brother left off.
Pencil in for the fall: Running back Malcolm Brown, one of the best running backs to commit to the Longhorns out of high school in years. 
Just missed on: Offensive tackle Christian Westerman to Auburn.

2. Oklahoma

Overview: The Sooners have a ton of talent returning for 2011 and a likely top three team in the country but that didn’t stop them from bringing a talented recruiting class. It wasn’t a big class but the talent in it should hit the field sooner rather than later (pun very much intended). 
Hidden gem: Cornerback Bennett Okotcha, a former Notre Dame commit, has continued to get better and could be a steal after a redshirt year. 
Pencil in for the fall: Wide receiver Trey Metoyer, who should be the next freshman wide receiver to put up numbers in the Oklahoma offense. 
Just missed on: Athlete Brandon Carter to TCU.

3. Texas Tech

Overview: Tommy Tuberville has certainly made his mark on the recruiting trail for the Red Raiders this year. Pulling prospects from Florida, Wisconsin, Alabama and Pennsylvania show that Tech is no longer just grabbing the players passed over by Texas and Oklahoma. In fact, this may be the most talented class to ever head to Lubbock. 
Hidden gem: Defensive end/linebacker Branden Jackson, who could be a terrific hybrid player with his speed and athleticism. 
Pencil in for the fall: Running back Kenny Williams has the size and power to add to the Tech ground game from day one. 
Just missed on: Cornerback Marcus Roberson to Florida.

4. Oklahoma State

Overview: Credit to Mike Gundy for signing an impressive class, especially on offense, despite experiencing a lot of staff turnover. The Cowboys filled needs and brought in some great skill position talent in 2011. 
Hidden gem: Athlete Desmond Roland is very versatile and could play all over for Oklahoma State. 
Pencil in for the fall: Running back Herschel Sims should slot into the running back rotation from the get go. 
Just missed on: Possibly Jon Jenkins, a former commit at defensive tackle who still hasn’t made his choice.

5. Texas A&M

Overview: The Aggies might not have taken advantage of Texas’ down year quite as much as they might have liked but they did put together a very solid class. Grabbing a few linebackers filled a big need. 
Hidden gem: Kicker Taylor Bertolet, one of the best kickers in the country and even kicked the game-winning field goal in the Under Armour All-America game. 
Pencil in for the fall: Outside linebacker Shaun Ward should come in and compete for playing time right away.

6. Kansas State

Overview: Junior college heavy to no one’s surprise, the Wildcats grabbed talented players from different parts of the country. 
Hidden gem: Former top recruits Arthur and Bryce Brown are part of this class as transfers and are still very talented despite most glossing over them because they transferred awhile back. 
Pencil in for the fall: Defensive end Ian Seau may have a familiar name (he’s Junior Seau’s nephew) but he will have no problem getting Wildcat fans to think of Ian whenever they hear of Seau.

7. Kansas

Overview: Turner Gill’s first full class as head coach doesn’t have a ton of impact players but it is a deep and versatile class.
Hidden gem: Wide receiver JaCorey Shepherd is a very explosive athlete who could end up being a steal. 
Pencil in for the fall: Running back Darrian Miller is an early enrollee so he will already be going through spring drills to learn the system. One of the best backs from the Midwest, he should step in right away at Kansas.

8. Baylor

Overview: Solid if not spectacular is the best way to describe Baylor’s class. There’s a ton of talent that should benefit from a redshirt year and good coaching from Art Briles
Hidden gem: Wide receiver Jonathan Lee has the size and speed to quickly become a factor in the passing game. 
Pencil in for the fall: Defensive tackle Trevor Valdez has a terrific motor and great quickness inside.

9. Missouri

Overview: Not the typical class we’ve seen from Missouri over the past couple of years but nevertheless a solid class to build around. 
Hidden gem: Quarterback Corbin Berkstresser should be a dependable backup early in career before being tapped to put up some big numbers for the Tigers. 
Pencil in for the fall: Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson has been waiting for a few years to play for Mizzou and should step in right away in the middle of the defense.

10. Iowa State

Overview: A very surprising class given some of the talents the Cyclones brought in. Although they’re ranked at the bottom of the Big 12 classes, there’s still a talent upgrade headed to Ames. 
Hidden gem: Wide receiver Quenton Bundrage is a very speedy kid who could be very productive in just about any offense. 
Pencil in for the fall: Running back DeVondrick Nealy is a great get for Iowa State out of Florida.

Posted on: February 2, 2011 2:41 am
 

Big 12 Signing Day at a glance

Posted by Adam Jacobi

The Big 12 may not have 12 members anymore, but it still does recruiting big -- especially down in Texas. Here's what to expect on National Signing Day.

Players to Watch

Brandon Alexander - Typically, Texas gets most of its recruiting out of the way early, and who can blame Mack Brown for that? When recruits in the most football-crazed state in America are beating down your door to get an offer, after all, filling a class full of blue-chippers months ahead of schedule isn't exactly difficult. And yet, when Texas jumps in late on a recruit, the team that was there first may have the inside track. So it appears with Alexander, a highly-touted DE who came into Tuesday still undecided between Texas, Texas A&M, Arkansas, and many other high-profile schools. According to Burnt Orange Nation, Alexander reportedly gave a verbal to Texas A&M Tuesday afternoon, but the commitment hasn't been confirmed elsewhere quite yet. We won't have to wait long for an answer on that front, but if it holds up, it's a coup for the Aggies, and a blow to Texas' depth at DE this season and beyond.

Nila Kasitati - TE/OL Nila Kasitati has been a soft verbal for Baylor for a while now, so Signing Day can't get here quick enough for the Bears -- especially since Oklahoma is pushing hard for Kasitati to switch his commitment. Oklahoma has a scholarship open after athlete Brandon Carter flipped from OU to TCU so he could play WR instead of defensive back (OU's favored position for Carter), and while the Sooners don't appear to have a replacement DB in mind, they do have their sights set on Kasitati as a potential star at offensive lineman instead. Does Kasitati honor his 10-month-long commitment to Baylor, or flip at the last second for the Sooners? Missouri is also in the mix here, but this appears to be a two-team race.

John Jenkins - This mammoth 6'4", 340-pound JUCO defensive tackle was an Oklahoma State commit for a while, but he decommitted in January to look farther east. OSU is still in the mix for Jenkins, who probably leans toward Georgia but didn't get an offer from Florida. He'd be a nice cap on an solid recruiting class, plus immediate help in the trenches for a defense that loses its two starting DTs. If OSU can get Jenkins back in the fold even after signing another JUCO DT in the meantime, Mike Gundy should be thrilled.

Teams to Watch

Texas - For somebody whose age suggests he's over the hill, Mack Brown can still recruit like nobody's business. Sure, the school recruits for itself quite a bit, but don't tell that to John Mackovic. Malcolm Brown is a potential Heisman winner at tailback, and Steve Edmond is one of three other MaxPreps Top 100 members of the class if it holds up (most of these commits are almost a year old, so we're assuming they're solid). Texas may have gone 5-7 this year, but it's recruiting like it's never going back. If Alexander's commitment to A&M holds up, it'll be interesting to see what Texas does with the freed scholarship.

Oklahoma - OU doesn't have a lot of players committed for this season -- just 17, which is enough to knock the Sooners down a few pegs on the MaxPreps rankings. There's lots of playmaking ability on offense though, with Troy Metoyer coming in as one of the best wideouts in the nation. Even adjusting for size, Oklahoma's class is good, but it isn't "Texas" good; we'll see what that does to the balance of power in the Red River Rivalry over the coming years. 

Oklahoma State - Any thought that OSU is a flash in the pan brought on by QB Brandon Weeden and/or a couple of stud wideouts should be gone by now; OSU's imminent signings of stud RB Herschel Sims and versatile QB J.W. Walsh mean that the Cowboy offense should keep putting numbers on the scoreboard for years to come. It's the rest of the class that Mike Gundy should focus his attention on; can he and his coaches mold the 10+ linemen in the class into the road graders necessary to compete against elite foes?   

The Below-the-Radar Storyline You'll Need to Follow

With Nebraska and Colorado officially departing from the conference, the Big 12 really had no choice but to do away with its championship game and just go with a nine-game, round-robin football schedule. One indirect result of that decision is that the remaining four Big 12 North teams no longer have the luxury of telling high-profile recruits they could help turn the North into a two-team division. Now, there's no getting around anybody in the South, and that may be the reason that all four of those North teams turned in frankly lackluster classes. Turner Gill recruited reasonably well to a woeful Kansas squad, but "reasonably well" doesn't beat Texas much more than once or twice out of ten tries -- especially at KU. Who's going to be the school from up north that makes a serious run at the conference crown, and how many years will it take before that happens?

Posted on: February 2, 2011 2:41 am
 

Big 12 Signing Day at a glance

Posted by Adam Jacobi

The Big 12 may not have 12 members anymore, but it still does recruiting big -- especially down in Texas. Here's what to expect on National Signing Day.

Players to Watch

Brandon Alexander - Typically, Texas gets most of its recruiting out of the way early, and who can blame Mack Brown for that? When recruits in the most football-crazed state in America are beating down your door to get an offer, after all, filling a class full of blue-chippers months ahead of schedule isn't exactly difficult. And yet, when Texas jumps in late on a recruit, the team that was there first may have the inside track. So it appears with Alexander, a highly-touted DE who came into Tuesday still undecided between Texas, Texas A&M, Arkansas, and many other high-profile schools. According to Burnt Orange Nation, Alexander reportedly gave a verbal to Texas A&M Tuesday afternoon, but the commitment hasn't been confirmed elsewhere quite yet. We won't have to wait long for an answer on that front, but if it holds up, it's a coup for the Aggies, and a blow to Texas' depth at DE this season and beyond.

Nila Kasitati - TE/OL Nila Kasitati has been a soft verbal for Baylor for a while now, so Signing Day can't get here quick enough for the Bears -- especially since Oklahoma is pushing hard for Kasitati to switch his commitment. Oklahoma has a scholarship open after athlete Brandon Carter flipped from OU to TCU so he could play WR instead of defensive back (OU's favored position for Carter), and while the Sooners don't appear to have a replacement DB in mind, they do have their sights set on Kasitati as a potential star at offensive lineman instead. Does Kasitati honor his 10-month-long commitment to Baylor, or flip at the last second for the Sooners? Missouri is also in the mix here, but this appears to be a two-team race.

John Jenkins - This mammoth 6'4", 340-pound JUCO defensive tackle was an Oklahoma State commit for a while, but he decommitted in January to look farther east. OSU is still in the mix for Jenkins, who probably leans toward Georgia but didn't get an offer from Florida. He'd be a nice cap on an solid recruiting class, plus immediate help in the trenches for a defense that loses its two starting DTs. If OSU can get Jenkins back in the fold even after signing another JUCO DT in the meantime, Mike Gundy should be thrilled.

Teams to Watch

Texas - For somebody whose age suggests he's over the hill, Mack Brown can still recruit like nobody's business. Sure, the school recruits for itself quite a bit, but don't tell that to John Mackovic. Malcolm Brown is a potential Heisman winner at tailback, and Steve Edmond is one of three other MaxPreps Top 100 members of the class if it holds up (most of these commits are almost a year old, so we're assuming they're solid). Texas may have gone 5-7 this year, but it's recruiting like it's never going back. If Alexander's commitment to A&M holds up, it'll be interesting to see what Texas does with the freed scholarship.

Oklahoma - OU doesn't have a lot of players committed for this season -- just 17, which is enough to knock the Sooners down a few pegs on the MaxPreps rankings. There's lots of playmaking ability on offense though, with Troy Metoyer coming in as one of the best wideouts in the nation. Even adjusting for size, Oklahoma's class is good, but it isn't "Texas" good; we'll see what that does to the balance of power in the Red River Rivalry over the coming years. 

Oklahoma State - Any thought that OSU is a flash in the pan brought on by QB Brandon Weeden and/or a couple of stud wideouts should be gone by now; OSU's imminent signings of stud RB Herschel Sims and versatile QB J.W. Walsh mean that the Cowboy offense should keep putting numbers on the scoreboard for years to come. It's the rest of the class that Mike Gundy should focus his attention on; can he and his coaches mold the 10+ linemen in the class into the road graders necessary to compete against elite foes?   

The Below-the-Radar Storyline You'll Need to Follow

With Nebraska and Colorado officially departing from the conference, the Big 12 really had no choice but to do away with its championship game and just go with a nine-game, round-robin football schedule. One indirect result of that decision is that the remaining four Big 12 North teams no longer have the luxury of telling high-profile recruits they could help turn the North into a two-team division. Now, there's no getting around anybody in the South, and that may be the reason that all four of those North teams turned in frankly lackluster classes. Turner Gill recruited reasonably well to a woeful Kansas squad, but "reasonably well" doesn't beat Texas much more than once or twice out of ten tries -- especially at KU. Who's going to be the school from up north that makes a serious run at the conference crown, and how many years will it take before that happens?

Posted on: January 29, 2011 5:44 pm
 

Big 12 needs, commits and hopes

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Baylor

Biggest need: Defensive linemen. Baylor has struggled over the years to get a decent pass rush and the Bears lose their best defensive tackle in Phillip Taylor to the NFL Draft. Getting quality and quantity at this position will be key to continue the momentum from their first bowl season in over a decade.

Best verbal commit: Offensive lineman Spencer Drango.

Hope to get: Running back Jermichael Selders.

Iowa State

Biggest need: Receiver. Iowa State loses their two leading scorers in the passing game and saw Sedrick Johnson transfer. There’s playing time available right away but the Cyclones need someone to break out and not just fill out the depth chart.

Best verbal commit: Running back Devondrick Nealy.

Hope to get: Wide receiver Cedric Gilbert.

Kansas

Biggest need: Defensive line. The Jayhawks lose three of the four starters off of the line and will need to bring in some players to bolster a unit that was 105th in the country in sacks and 107th in rush defense.

Best verbal commit: Athlete Anthony Pierson.

Hope to get: Defensive tackle Terry Redden.

Kansas State 

Biggest need: Offensive line. All three interior linemen are gone from a unit that paved the way for running back Daniel Thomas. While head coach Bill Snyder will typically get some help from the junior college ranks, the Wildcats need some bodies to build around on the O-line.

Best verbal commit: Defensive end Meshak Williams.

Hope to get: Defensive tackle Kevin McReynolds.

Missouri

Biggest need: Defensive line. Missouri has been hit by graduation and impact player Aldon Smith leaving for the NFL. Finding players who can play right away will be key if they are to re-tool on defense.

Best verbal commit: Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson.

Hope to get: Defensive tackle Christopher Cormier.

Oklahoma

Biggest need: Secondary. Two starters have graduated and their two replacements should both be upper classmen. The fact that they play in a pass-happy league also means it’s never a bad thing to have several defensive backs.

Best verbal commit: Running back Brandon Williams.

Hope to get: Class is pretty much set for 2011.

Oklahoma State

Biggest need: Linemen. Three starters depart from the defensive line and there will be four seniors on the offensive line. The Cowboys are looking for depth as much as they are players who can compete early.

Best verbal commit: Running back Herschel Sims.

Hope to get: Defensive end Brandon Alexander.

Texas

Biggest need: Secondary. Aaron Williams, as expected, left early for the NFL draft and the departures of several seniors leave this group thin. If they’re going to compete against some prolific offenses, Texas needs to grab a few players who can play immediately.

Best verbal commit: Running back Malcolm Brown.

Hope to get: Defensive end Brandon Alexander.

Texas A&M

Biggest need: Linebacker. The loss of Von Miller and Michael Hodges are huge for a defense that was starting to turn the corner under defensive coordinator Tim DeRuyter. In the 3-4 scheme, the Aggies need depth as well as playmakers.

Best verbal commit: Quarterback Johnny Manziel.

Hope to get: Linebacker and soft verbal commit Shaun Ward.

Texas Tech

Biggest need: Receiver. All-everything receiver Lyle Leong is gone and the depth at the position looks thin after 2011.

Best verbal commit: Running back Kenny Williams.

Hope to get: Cornerback Marcus Roberson.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com