Oklahoma football: Sooners finding Dallas area a hotbed for 2020 recruiting

More than half of the 2019 Oklahoma football recruiting class isn’t on campus yet; meanwhile the attention of Lincoln Riley and his Sooner coaching staff has already turned hot and heavy to recruits for 2020 and beyond.

Oklahoma’s last two recruiting classes ranked in the top 10 nationally, according to both ESPN and Rivals. Earlier this year, the Sooners’ 2019 class ranked in the top five, but has since dropped back into the second ten, the result of several decommitments.

As of the end of February, OU’s 2020 verbal commitments stood at four. Since the middle of April, though, the Sooners have added three more to the list, the  most recent coming on Monday, when four-star offensive tackle Nate Anderson committed to Oklahoma.

Anderson is a 6-foot, 5-inch, 262-pound offensive tackle from Frisco, Texas, rated by 247Sports as the 14th best player available at the position on a national level. He had as many as 18 offers from other schools, including five other Big 12 schools.

The fact that Anderson was recruited by OU offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh should speak for itself. The Sooners have had outstanding offensive line play since Bedenbaugh joined Bob Stoops’ coaching staff in 2013. In the recent NFL Draft, four Oklahoma offensive linemen were selected from the O-line that won the Joe Moore Award as the best in college football last season.

Oklahoma has always recruited heavily in the state of Texas — one of the reasons the long-standing rivalry with the University of Texas has become one of the biggest in college football. Riley, a Texas native himself, is perhaps even more inclined that past Sooner head coaches to stake claims in the talent-rich Lone Star State.

Riley’s last two recruiting classes have been heavily stocked with Texas players. The 2018 class featured nine players from Texas out of 23 total, and the number of Texans reached double digits (10) in the 24-member 2019 class. By contrast, there was only one player from Oklahoma in the Sooners’ 2018 recruiting class, and only five in the 2019 class.

Six of Oklahoma’s seven 2020 commitments not only played under the Friday night lights in Texas, but all hail from the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex. The class makeup so far consists of two wide receivers, two defensive backs, a quarterback, an offensive lineman and a running back. The one non-Texan is a three-star defensive back recruit, Dontae Manning, from the Kansas City area.

Next: Why Bill Bedenbaugh is the best offensive line coach in the country

Something tells me the Sooners are far from done in the neighboring state to the south as they continue to fill out their 2020 recruiting class, which could easily be another top-10 haul for Coach Riley and his staff..

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