As many Sooners fans were quick to point out last night, the defection of Cameron Rising from OU to Texas doesn’t exactly make Oklahoma thin at QB. Between Kyler Murray, Austin Kendall and Chris Robison, OU’s next wave of quarterbacks can easily carry the program into the next decade.
But in the modern landscape of college football, it’s borderline reckless to go a year without signing a quarterback. There are just too many things that can happen. You can bet the OU coaching staff made this priority No. 1 as soon as they heard Rising’s decision. And one of the first calls they undoubtedly made was to a guy who’s in line to be Rising’s future teammate — Southmoore’s Casey Thompson.
As Thompson told Burnt Orange Nation last night, “OU hit me up already.”
Thompson went on to say that he had no problem with the news, that the Longhorns were always going to take two quarterbacks and that the coaching staff was up-front with him. If Thompson is mad or surprised about this development, he’s certainly not showing it.
That said, Oklahoma should pursue Thompson as far as it can. As an OU legacy, the son of Charles and the brother of Kendal, Thompson’s family probably would prefer that he stay close to home at a school they’re familiar with — and, you know, don’t hate.
I don’t think a Thompson flip is inevitable by any means, and it might take more time than the Sooners are willing to invest, but it makes too much sense for OU not to explore it.
But if not? Spencer Sanders is a name that came up a lot last night.
Sanders, a Denton Ryan (TX) QB, is currently committed to Oklahoma State. A dual-threat talent, he’s not as highly-regarded as Rising but brings a skillset that could thrive in OU’s system.
With a great deep ball and good speed, it’s easy to see why Sanders has OU interested. I just have a hard time seeing him flip to a school that hasn’t even offered yet over one that made him a top priority. And as a self-described “farm boy,” OSU might be more to his liking anyway.
If he can win a job, Oklahoma would give Sanders a better supporting cast and better chance to win big. That’s going to be the gist of Lincoln Riley’s pitch — we’ll see how effective it is.
If Thompson and Sanders turn down the offer, Riley will have to broaden his search. It’s unclear at this time what that might look like, though Riley might be able to find an overlooked diamond in Texas or back east in his old stomping grounds.
On signing day, Riley talked about his philosophy on quarterback recruits. He said he wants recruits who are 100 percent committed and done, who can build a class around them and help the Sooners plan for their future.
“When you [commit],” Riley said, “then we’re done and you need to be done too.”
Cameron Rising wasn’t done. And now the Sooners have to figure out what to do about that.