i will be a freshman at #tvcc in a couple of days..turn up— K.HUGG✈DA CHOSEN1 (@topflightkhugg) June 28, 2013
The rumors had been there ever since he "decommitted" from Texas A&M and flipped to Oklahoma. 2013 Skyline (Dallas, TX) defensive tackle Kerrick Huggins tweeted early Friday morning that he will indeed being forced to go the junior college route after failing to qualify academically. Decommitted is in quotes because at the time many believed the Aggies dropped Huggins based on their belief of exactly this, the unlikelihood of him qualifying. Well, that and the fact they stole Justin Manning.
It's not like Texas A&M was aware of Huggins being a grade risk and Oklahoma was oblivious. At the time, the Sooners were desperate for defensive tackles and deemed Huggins worth the risk. Obviously it didn't pay off.
There had been previous conflicting reports on his academic status with SoonerScoop.com reporting Huggins would not qualify while ESPN's Sooner Nation had word from Huggins himself that he still had a chance. Hindsight being 20/20, it's easy to understand why a quote from Huggins might not have been the most reliable source. Which sounds odd, but if there is anyone who is going to be optimistic on his chances it's Huggins.
So now the reality of things. Huggins has previously said if he did have to go JUCO that he'd still like to wind up in Norman. However, a lot can change in two years and if he plays like the guy many thought had a legitimate chance to see the field as a true freshman he'll have no shortage of suitors.
While the news of Huggins not qualifying has technically been out there for some time, now that it's a reality it puts an even brighter spotlight on the defensive tackle position. It turns Oklahoma's 2013 four man defensive tackle class into a three man. And as we mentioned, it's the loss of a guy who could have actually seen the field as a true freshman. This news also only further emphasizes just how vital it is for Quincy Russell to make it to campus. Nobody seems to know his current status with the latest rumor being an outstanding tuition balance due to his junior college as the primary reason for his delayed arrival in Norman.
Defensive tackle was already a position of concern heading into this season. Just check out the current online roster and count how many defensive tackles you see listed. I'll wait.
Three. That's right, just three defensive tackles.
So the loss of Huggins, if for no other reason than another body at the position, hurts. The idea of losing Russell would be devastating.
Jerry Montgomery's job just got a little bit tougher.