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Five Recruits I Want

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First, an aside on the general recruiting process: I respect the fact that college football teams have one of the highest turnover rates of any profitable organization in the country and that there is generally a lot of buzz about who will fill the voids left behind by sirs Weeden, Blackmon, and Martin.

I don’t however respect the willingness for fans and alums to insert themselves in that process. Writing on a recruit’s Facebook wall, tweeting at a recruit why he should attend your university, or sending him personalized emails with a list of “10 reasons why Stillwater > Gainesville” as the subject line are all not cool things for a person, male or female, above the age of…say 21…to do.

And so I usually shy away from the entire thing. I’ve done my best to update you on who is committed to OSU and who we can expect to see play football and hoops for the Cowboys next year, but to try and climb inside the mind of a teenager who may or may not know who he’s taking to the homecoming dance, much less where the rest of life will be molded for the next four-odd years, isn’t really my bag.

So I won’t tell you what’s going to happen, or try and predict the future, but I will tell you it would be mighty nice to have a few of these guys running routes and throwing blocks in Stillwater next year.

Without further ado (or drudgery about the recruiting process), here’s a recruiting wish list from me to you…

These are unusual times for Oklahoma State football. No, not because it’s coming off it’s first Big 12 title and BCS victory, but the recruiting landscape is a bit turned upside down right now. Jay Fielder (who writes for Rivals) mentioned it in a tweet the other day:

See, OSU only has 16 guys locked up for the 2012 class. Four are enrolled and the other 12 are supposed to sign letters of intent on February 1st (national signing day). There are only two teams in the Big 12 (Kansas – 10 and Kansas State – 12) that have fewer guys committed.

So this time of year, instead of double and triple checking commitments from 17-year olds getting ready for prom, Mike Gundy and Co. are still trying to woo those teenagers to scurry on over to Stillwater for the next four (or five) years of their lives.

It should be noted that one fun (and possibly resourceful) way to woo recruits is to take them to a packed house, ear-splittingly loud, exciting basketball game in your historic basketball arena…so, yeah, that’s not working for OSU this year. And to accentuate the point, Gundy brought a handful in on Saturday when OSU was getting romped in Waco.

Anyway, with a host of guys still in the mix, here’s my list of five guys I’d love to have at Oklahoma State based on positional need and YouTube videos:

1. Keon Hatcher (WR, Owasso) – 3 stars

You can’t ever have too many weapons on offense (unless you’re Travis Ford) and OSU is going to need somebody (Josh Stewart?) to fill the the small, slot-shaped hole Josh Cooper is leaving at wide receiver. Hatcher (6’2, 205) would be ideal for that. He’s committed to Arkansas, but apparently enjoyed his time in Stillwater.

Also, here’s video of him making a one-handed catch at a TCU football camp.

2. Jaydon Mickens (ATH, Los Angeles) – 4 stars

I’m a sucker for anybody with the letters A-T-H next to their Rivals profile, but this dude is special. Watch the video below and he looks like poor man’s Reggie Bush. I could absolutely see him getting playing time in a Joseph Randle (freshman year)/Josh Stewart type role next season.

He also visited last weekend and was impressed:

Although he…ahem…doesn’t understand this whole time zone thing.

3. LaDarrell McNeil (S, Dallas) – 4 stars

Because he’s Markel 2.0. Because OSU can’t get enough help in the secondary. And because things are falling apart at Rocky Top faster than Derek Dooley can update that not-so-lengthy resume of his. Although if the Cowboys can’t un-commit him to UT, Trae Elston wouldn’t be a bad backup plan.

4. Javon Williams (WR, Chandler) – 4 stars

I wasn’t going to include another wideout on here but screw it, let’s just accept the fact that this is who we are. We recruit the crap out of skill positions, let Wickline develop the offensive line every year, and pray the defense can hold teams under 35.

This kid is sick.

He’s also being recruited by Arizona State (good luck with your coach staying!) and Arkansas, which is one of the few schools in the country that can match OSU in wide receiver depth and ability to say “hey, we’re going to throw it 45 times a game and you’re going to be heavily involved.” He’s scheduled for a visit next weekend.

5. Michael Wilson (OL, Aledo) – 3 stars

OSU is losing four seniors off this year’s offensive line rotation and though this hasn’t exactly been an area of concern in the last half decade (remember what everyone said about having a whole new cast of characters protecting Weeden last year?), it can’t ever hurt to get a 6’6 275 lb. freshman in the mix. Especially one you’re trying to steal from the SEC.

It’s interesting that OSU isn’t chasing that many defensive linemen of note, until you remember that they already have one in the fold and four others committed AND that there’s not a single defensive tackle classified as a senior (and only four juniors!) on the team this year.

Finally, I want to thank Jay Fielder and Jeff Johnson for their hard work at Rivals in following up on all this recruiting news. It’s not particularly my forte and their work is thorough which helps me to inform (and hopefully) entertain you with some news.

Happy MLK day.

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