One of the big college football storylines of the summer centered on Oklahoma’s recruiting efforts. Before June, there was chatter Oklahoma was severely lacking in recruiting the class of 2023. Many around the program told naysayers to be patient, that the summer months would be big for the Sooners.
Over the course of the summer, Oklahoma became a top five or six recruiting class. It’s safe to say things are good with Oklahoma’s recruiting efforts.
But good isn’t good enough to win a national championship — something that has eluded this program since 2000.
The Sooners have to recruit among the elite year in and year out, especially in the trenches where there’s a stark contrast between national championship contenders and pretenders.
How does first-year head coach Brent Venables plan to do that? You put yourself in positions to land a commitment from five-star defensive line prospects such as David Hicks, who moved up his commitment date from Under Armour All-American game to Sept. 28 at 3:30 on ESPN.
— David “DJ” Hicks Jr. (@DJ2g23) September 23, 2022
Hicks is as dominant a force in high school football as you can find. He stands 6-foot-4 and is around 270 pounds. He has dominated 6A competition in Texas. 247Sports has him as the No. 1 prospect in Texas and the No. 1 defensive lineman in the class of 2023.
He also represents the caliber of defensive line prospects Brent Venables has thrived with at Clemson and in his first tour as Oklahoma defensive coordinator.
Defensive line coach Todd Bates, who followed Venables from Clemson to Oklahoma, is no stranger to recruiting five-star defensive linemen. Furthermore, he’s no stranger to landing top prospects either. Venables and Bares nabbed a commitment from the No. 1 player in 2019, defensive tackle Bryan Bresee.
The relationship between the Hicks family and Venables and Bates as well as their track record for developing NFL defensive talent has propelled Oklahoma to the forefront of this recruitment.
The Sooners’ momentum with Hicks is high and continues to rise. Recruiting insiders from Michigan State and Miami both logged predictions in favor of Oklahoma in the hours following Hicks’ decision to change his commitment date to Sept. 28.
It all comes down to next week and Oklahoma is sprinting toward a a top-three finish in the 2023 recruiting cycle if it is able to land a commitment from Hicks.
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