Bob Przybylo answers readers' questions about Oklahoma football and basketball recruiting in his mailbag every week. Got a question for Bob? Send it to his mailbag at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sonny in Dallas asks: I really like what Shipp has been doing last two weeks. Any chance OU gets a commitment from some of these defensive tackles?
Bob Przybylo: Of course there is a chance, but it hasn't reached that point yet. Shipp has obviously gone through another round of evaluations and has been ready to strike.
The two most recent visitors to campus have been defensive tackles in three-star prospect Rod Crayton (Dadeville, Ala./Dadeville) and junior college recruit Toby Johnson (Hutchinson, Kan./Hutchinson CC).
Add to that a couple of new offers at the position with junior college tackle Quincy Russell (Athens, Texas/Trinity Valley CC) and ESPN 150 member Maquedius Bain (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./University School of Nova Sout) and Shipp is making good use of the final few weeks in July.
The Sooners are still in the running, if not leading the charge, for ESPN 150 tackle Justin Manning (Dallas/Kimball), but we all know OU needs more than one tackle for this class.
Crayton doesn’t have an offer, and the reservation could be because he’s 6-foot-1, which is a couple inches smaller than what most elite tackles are. One thing that has been clear is when Shipp makes a real effort at a recruit, he gains their trust and keeps the Sooners in the mix for as long as possible.
Ken in Muskogee, Okla., asks: Cody Thomas went from No. 93 to not rated and a three-star guy? Should we be worried? Was this too hasty a move by your colleagues?
Bob Przybylo: It certainly wasn’t the best week ever for Colleyville (Texas) Heritage quarterback Cody Thomas at the Elite 11 finals. I think it’s kind of funny that had he simply stayed home in Texas nobody would be saying anything.
ESPN's national recruiting director Tom Luginbill said that Thomas right now looks like he is having a hard time competing on an elite level in both football and baseball. It's hard to argue with that.
It is also no reason to panic, either. Thomas fought hard with Josh Heupel to make sure he didn’t get lost in the shuffle. Thomas wants this, and Heupel is somebody who obviously can mold quarterbacks and turn them into something special.
What has me intrigued is whether or not last week makes Thomas second-guess if trying to play both sports in college is a good idea. It’s one thing to play two sports, but it’s a different ballgame trying to play quarterback at OU and another sport.
Anthony in New Orleans asks: I see you got a chance to watch Tony Brown in person this week. Do you think he is as good as advertised?
Bob Przybylo: I came away incredibly impressed with Beaumont (Texas) Ozen cornerback Tony Brown. His offers speak for themselves but the laid-back atmosphere at the National Underclassmen Combine event gave me a chance to talk with him and his mother.
Brown came off extremely humble because you could sense he wasn’t sure about what his future was going to be as a freshman. He recognizes how much he has grown as a person and a player in the last couple of years and is ready to make the most out of his opportunities.
It won’t be easy to get Brown’s commitment, but the Sooners have started things in the right direction. And at this point, he has no favorites so if they can get him for a visit to campus during the season, it could go a long way in helping things.
On the field, Brown was the best player. Between his natural instincts, his speed and intelligence, he did exactly what he set out to do. It will be Interesting to see how he fares at the Gridiron Kings event this weekend.