OU football recruiting update
BY ERIC BAILEY World Sports Writer
Sunday, January 13, 2013
1/25/13 at 2:40 PM
Welcome: Oklahoma rolled out the welcome mat for visitors to campus over the weekend, and the Sooners got a verbal commitment out of it.
Charles Walker, a 6-foot-4, 280-pounder from South Garland (Texas) High School, made his pledge to the Sooners public on Twitter on Saturday night. Walker hadn't been hit hard by schools (North Texas, Houston and New Mexico are on his list), and his addition will help the Sooners to fill defensive tackle spots.
OU also needs to fill up with linebackers and another offensive tackle.
Evaluating can be tough: Often times, Oklahoma's first contact with a potential recruit is during one of its camps.
In years past, it could be a two- or three-day visit. These days, it mainly is a one-day stop.
"Yeah, it's just hard to get kids, as you know, for two and three days now," OU coach Bob Stoops said. "They've gotta move, they've gotta get to all these camps and they only have time for one. Or finances. It's just really hard to get two, three days with a kid now."
The OU coach said it can be hard to get a great evaluation on prospects.
"We spend a lot of time in schools trying to evaluate and gather information," Stoops said. "What's he really like? It's just tough to have the time to make a great evaluation. We do like them to come in the summer to camps as much as possible. To me, in particular, too when they're freshmen and sophomores.
"It's where you can really get a jump if you like some sophomores and you can start communicating with them and getting them to games."
Getting along: Stoops said he believes it's important for his coaching staff to relate well to recruits.
His staff also understands that they are dealing with a number of personalities when looking at prospective players.
"All guys are different, but (if) a guy doesn't want to relate to you, he's probably not going to," Stoops said. "Usually, we feel we're pretty good guys and can relate to people pretty well."
Signing day countdown
Oklahoma had planned to hold its Junior Day on Saturday but postponed the event earlier last week.
The reason why? Bob Stoops said during a media availability that it would stretch the coaching staff thin. It already is a busy recruiting weekend with Class of 2013 players.
Stoops added that there are plenty of weekends in the future where juniors could be brought to campus.
ESPN 19th (down one spot), Rivals 19th (down six spots), Scout 17th (down two spots).
Position watch: Linebacker
The Sooners lost a key commitment when linebacker Jordan Mastrogiovanni changed his pledge from the Sooners to Texas A&M just 72 hours after the Aggies dominated OU in the Cotton Bowl.
Mastrogiovanni, a 6-foot-3, 225-pound linebacker, was considered the Sooners' top linebacker recruit.
Oklahoma's top linebacker recruit is now Jordan Evans, a 6-3, 205-pounder from Norman North. Booker T. Washington commit Dominique Alexander (6-0, 190) doesn't have linebacker size, but could he be developed into one?
The spot will be handled by senior Corey Nelson, junior Aaron Franklin and freshman Frank Shannon next season. But depth will need to be recruited at this position, especially with the early departure of Tom Wort.
This position wasn't a huge point of emphasis. But after Mastrogiovanni's loss, it could be considered one now.
OU (SIGNED/ENROLLED 2)
||Laney (Calif.) C.C.
||Trinity Valley (Texas) C.C.
Verbal commitments (16)
||Tulsa B.T. Washington
||Josiah St. John
||Trinity Valley (Texas) C.C.
||Tulsa East Central
||South Garland, Texas