The Oklahoma Sooners have long held a strong recruiting influence in Oklahoma and Texas. However, it appears that yearly influence is growing into a national thing.
The Sooners reeled in recruits from 11 different states in their 2012 class, something that doesn’t happen every year despite the prominence of the Oklahoma football program.
The Sooners got commitments from far off places such as Florida, Ohio, California, Illinois, and Maryland in addition to the usual suspects of Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas.
One of the biggest reasons behind that is previous players from some of those states, particularly California and Florida.
Running back Roy Finch hails from Niceville, Fla., and while he may not have directly affected the recruitment of the five players from Florida in the Sooners’ class, his success has certainly made an impact on the decisions of prospective recruits in the state.
California is a very different story for Oklahoma.
The ‘Cali Trio’ of Brennan Clay, Tony Jefferson, and Kenny Stills have expressed a desire to get more California players on the Sooners’ roster, both privately and publicly on their respective Twitter accounts.
While the 2011 class hailed almost exclusively from Texas, the trio made their efforts felt in the 2012 class, as the Sooners reeled in three more California natives.
The Sooners have excellent recruiters, namely co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Jay Norvell, who was named as the Big 12 recruiter of the year for putting together a phenomenal wide receiver class for Oklahoma. In some cases, though, the biggest recruiters the Sooners, or any team for that matter, have are the players on the roster.
As players from different areas see success at their respective schools, they want to bring players they know along with them.
After all, who doesn’t want to be on the same team as their friends?
It’s beginning to become a trend for the Sooners. The rich fields of California and Florida have produced many great football players. If Oklahoma can continue to build relationships with high school coaches in those two states, as well as continuing their already strong presence in Texas, the Sooners roster could be loaded for years to come.