November 13, 2010

What are the Key Recruiting Positions Moving Forward?

The Mailbag is a feature for our fans to get questions that may require a little more depth and clarity of explanation directly from assistant editor Josh McCuistion. Each week we'll field questions for the mailbag and get you all answers at the week's end!

This week's mailbag has a look at numerous topics such as breaking down Oklahoma's current situation at defensive tackle and whether Oklahoma's recruitment of the position has changed in recent years. Also what are Oklahoma's biggest needs for the class of 2011, could Oklahoma be zeroing in on a few national quarterbacks for the class of 2012? Find all this and much more in this week's Mailbag!

With college football being only half a year removed from seeing the dominance of players like Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy, do you feel like Oklahoma is suffering a little in their defensive tackle recruiting by going after players with superior quickness and hoping they'll get stronger later? Oklahoma is clearly struggling with depth at DT in spite of signing four high-schoolers in their 2010 class. Is it, as we've heard before, a case of these youngsters (with the possible exception of Daniel Noble) not being strong enough for the college level or are they suffering in their technique like an R.J. Washington? Players like Suh and McCoy excelled in both strength and quickness, so is Oklahoma hurting themselves by going after only one trait?

- Gary

I've heard this come up a few times and I think when you look at Oklahoma's great tackles of the past the one-techniques were always the one with real strength and power. To me part of this is the fact that Adrian Taylor doesn't seem physically able to plant and entrench himself against the ground game and that reality has more to do with injury and nothing to do with strength.

I think in general OU's defensive tackles lacks that singular playmaker it has had for years and years. It started with Tommie Harris, continued on with Dusty Dvoracek and then on to McCoy. When Oklahoma has one defensive tackle that is worthy of a double-team regardless of the play that leaves the one-technique in a singular-blocking situation. Right now Oklahoma doesn't have anyone that is a constant double-team candidate although I think Stacey McGee is making a lot of positive strides.

I think with guys like McFarland, Torrea Peterson, and Marquis Anderson coming in you're going to see plenty of strength to go along with quickness as Oklahoma has done a nice job in the last two classes at defensive tackle. To me it's just a position you're going to have to be patient with as McGee is the only guy I'm thinking really has a chance to be a definite difference maker at this point.

I think next year things should be improved but I admit I think it's 2012 before you really see change in the front four unless Oklahoma can land a difference maker in the junior college ranks.

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