The Oklahoma Sooners just wrapped a big recruiting weekend, with several 2018 targets visiting Norman for the first time. Defensive tackle Emmit Gooden seemed to enjoy himself, and OU took a flyer on quarterback Tanner McKee, who can enroll in 2020 after his Mormon mission.
But perhaps no visit was bigger than that of four-star offensive tackle Penei Sewell from Saint George, Utah. Scout considers Sewell the best tackle in the entire West and the best Utah recruit, and he would be a fantastic addition to an offensive line class that already includes stud Oklahoman Brey Walker.
At 6-4, 319 pounds, Sewell is a physical monster but is also more than just his mass. He’s quicker and more athletic than he looks, with good footwork and a high motor. He does a good job lead blocking for runners, and can be seen on film driving hapless defensive linemen 10 yards downfield. Plus, his size means he might be able to kick inside in college and give OU some positional versatility. Utah high school football won’t prepare him for the Big 12, but Sewell definitely has all the tools he needs for the transition.
Oklahoma offered Sewell over a year ago — it was one of the first schools involved. Turns out, Sewell isn’t completely unfamiliar with the state. His grandfather is from Coweta, and his father and coach Gabriel visited often as a child. But mostly, this is going to come down to Sewell’s relationship with Bill Bedenbaugh, and the early signs are very positive. Sewell has taken a lot of unofficial visits, but seemed particularly impressed with Okahoma’s new facilities. Hopefully, he’ll be back for an official this fall.
The other school to keep an eye on here are the USC Trojans. A powerhouse throughout the West, Southern Cal is going hard after Sewell and is probably the team to beat moving forward. Sewell has two brothers playing defense at Nevada, which would normally mean a lot, but it seems Penei would rather go the Power Five direction than play with his brothers just to say he did.
Sewell plays things close to the vest, and most expect him to take his time and weigh his numerous options. When he finally narrows down his choices, however, it would be a big surprise if Oklahoma doesn’t make that cut. Another great season, and Oklahoma could again wind up with one of the nation’s best O-line classes.
OU will need exemplary O-line play to continue running the Air Raid effectively, and Penei Sewell could be a big part of that.