Oklahoma added a big piece to its 2020 recruiting class with the commitment of Rivals100 Brentwood (Tenn.) Ravenwood defensive end Reggie Grimes on Thursday. Grimes, a 6-foot-5, 240-pound prospect, choose the Sooners over South Carolina, Florida State and several others. The relationship between the two sides came together quickly, with Grimes visiting last month after not previously naming the Sooners among his favorites. But with the team in the College Football Playoff discussion and a new defensive identity, the stars aligned for Oklahoma to grab a Rivals100 prospect from the Volunteer State for the second straight year.
WHY IT'S BIG FOR OKLAHOMA
While Oklahoma's defense has shown progress under first-year defensive coordinator Alex Grinch, it's clear that the team needs more playmakers on that side of the ball. That's why landing a player of Grimes' potential is important. At 6-foot-5 and with elite speed and athleticism, Grimes has a tantalizing skillset. Most coaches think his best days are head of him and if Oklahoma can hone his skills as a pass-rusher, they could end up with a true steal. Grimes also keeps the pipeline open to Tennessee, where the Sooners have had success in recent years, including landing Rivals100 defensive back Woodi Washington in 2019.
WHY IT HURTS SOUTH CAROLINA, TENNESSEE AND OTHERS
South Carolina was in the driver's seat for Grimes for the better part of six months and seemed like the leader in the clubhouse, even after Grimes official visit to Norman last month. But uncertainty around the job status of Will Muschamp, including comments by the university president earlier in the month, opened the door for Oklahoma to swoop in and snag Grime's commitment. South Carolina put a lot of effort into recruiting Grimes and isn't likely to give up until he's signed. As far as the Vols, reports conflict about how high the school was on him, but he did take an official visit this fall and Jeremy Pruitt had been the point man on Grimes recruitment earlier in the year. Time will tell if the school will regret letting Grimes slip out of state. Alabama also deserves a mention as Grimes is a Tide legacy and seemed bound for Tuscaloosa from early on in his career, but the Tide elected to go in a different direction at the position. It's possible the Tide could regret not pushing harder for Grimes if he turns into a star with the Sooners.