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April 16, 2014

Sooners Lose Highest Rated Commitment

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He may have been the first commitment of Oklahoma's class of 2015 but with his decision made so early there was something always weighing on the mind of Rivals100 offensive guard Josh Wariboko.

The desire to play with his brother, 2016 Oklahoma City Casady defensive back teammate Max Wariboko.

And though that's largely what inspired the 6-foot-3, 310-pound lineman to decommit from his long-time Sooners pledge recently, it's not the only thing.

"Well, I want to take a few more visits and really survey all of my options and further explore the chance I have to play together with my brother in college," Wariboko explained. "The last thing I wanted to do was undermine the best interests of Bob Stoops and the University of Oklahoma staff.

"I knew I wanted to take some more trips without bringing into question of my integrity or my family's integrity. I didn't want to say I was committed and take trips, that didn't seem right. I want to do this the right way, this is the ethical thing to do right now."

Wariboko let Oklahoma's offensive line coach, and his long-time lead recruiter, Bill Bedenbaugh know of his decision almost a week ago but had waited to announce the news until Wednesday night.

Though he got the tough part over early, Wariboko says that the second-year Sooner assistant handled things better than he thought possible.

"Coach Bedenbaugh, I can say that he understood and I really respect him so much for that. I went in there with an expectation that it wasn't going to be anything good but he really handled it in a professional way and I was just really happy that I could come and tell him and be completely honest with him and him taking it like that," he said.

At the time of his decision, in late June of 2013, perhaps no one was more excited about his choice than his parents, a pair of Oklahoma alums. And just as they did with his commitment, not surprisingly the tight knit Wariboko group came to the decision to reopen the state's No. 1 player's recruitment as a unit.

"I've talked to (my parents) several times about the decision to reopen my recruitment. They understood it and knew how important it is for us as a family. We come from a family-oriented background and that's the main focus for us all right now. These 10 months right now to try and find the right place for Max and I," he said. "I want the chance to go through this and to see if my brother and I can find the right place for us."

Though he doesn't know what visits he will be taking going forward he says that he is hoping that along with the schools who have long been recruiting him that he'll also pick up some more SEC, Big 12, and Big 10 notoriety - making special note of both Ohio State and Michigan.

One thing that will happen according to Wariboko is that his family will be taking trips to see schools that have offered both he and his brother. And though he is hopeful that list grows, following Max's first offer coming on Tuesday night from Louisville, he says he knows that's beyond his control.

"Honestly, I know that it would be ridiculous to try and get a football program to offer Max just because I want them to but at least I can try and get him some looks and try and give him any help I can," he explained. "I'm not exactly sure, but probably going to check out schools that have offered my brother and I."

"I know that we are two different people and it may or may not work out that we do get to play together but we are going to go through this process together.

So it's not exactly a certainty that the Waribokos will be playing together?

"I just want to know that we tried to explore that opportunity," he said. "Honestly, I don't want to do this for attention, because I feel like there may be, things out there that make this seem bad. I think (Oklahoma) is a wonderful program. I'm not trying to sever the relationship, they are still going to have a spot but I just want to talk to my family and this is something that we all want to do right now."



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