A month ago, it looked like Oklahoma was in prime position to flip four-star Fresno product Jaylon Johnson from Utah and add yet another star to #SoonerSquad17. Johnson even visited campus in early December. But things are always in flux when it comes to recruiting, and the last two OU offers make it look like the Sooners might be moving along without the talented corner.
The offers were announced in quick succession on Thursday afternoon, first by three-star Indiana athlete and Louisville commit Russ Yeast
Thankful to receive an offer from the University of Oklahoma pic.twitter.com/WnPWlVGks8— Russ Yeast (@russ_yeast03) January 12, 2017
and then by three-star Richmond (TX) George Ranch DB Samuel Barnes.
Received my 16th offer from The University Of Oklahoma. pic.twitter.com/VHZg5QAYbx— 23 (@_SamuelBarnes) January 12, 2017
Yeast is a talented two-way player (and Under Armour All-American who the Sooners would want to use at corner if they can pry him away from the Cardinals, which at this point looks somewhat unlikely given the program’s relative success and its proximity to Yeast. And you can bet that the Sooners aren’t the only program making a late push for his services. But the offer at least says that Yeast is exploring his options. OU’s chances: 15%
Meanwhile, Barnes can play anywhere in the defensive backfield at 6-1 and 194 pounds. He’s got great ball skills and is a big hitter, though he’ll have to work on wrapping up bigger college guys as most high schoolers must. Barnes is on an official to UTSA this weekend, but with standing offers from Colorado, Baylor, UCLA and now Oklahoma, I’d say the Roadrunners are out of luck here. OU’s chances: 40%
Barnes is a very realistic target for the Sooners, and he’d slide nicely into a class of DBs that already includes Robert Barnes (boy, that could get confusing), Justin Broiles and Tre Brown.
The Sooners are looking to close strong on this recruiting class by locking down cornerstone guys like Jacob Phillips and filling out the rest with solid depth. Three-star guys getting last-minute offers from OU will have to weigh the security of playing time at a smaller school against the chance for greatness amongst one of America’s best classes. I’m guessing a handful will take their chances and join this group, and it’ll be fascinating to see how Oklahoma finishes between now and Feb. 1.