When and if Waxahachie High School junior Jalen Reagor joins one of the Big 12 conference’s best football teams when the University of Oklahoma kicks off its 2017 season against the University of Texas-El Paso on Sept. 2 at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, he has a chance to help the Sooners do something they’ve only done seven times in 122 years and never in the BCS playoff era.
Bring a NCAA national championship to Norman.
Reagor, who has yet to sign a letter of intent but has committed to the University of Oklahoma via Twitter on March 27, will have talented help, though — loads of it.
He could join former Allen High school quarterback Kyler Murray, and current McKinney, Mesquite, Cedar Hill, Collinsville (Oklahoma), John Marshall (Oklahoma) and Columbus (Florida) high school stars Tyrese Robinson, Chris Robison, Charleston Rambo, Justin Broiles, Levi Draper and Trajan Bandy when the super team begins practices during the summer of 2017.
Each player has either transferred or committed to the University of Oklahoma in the past six months and is a projected top-50 recruit or player in each of their respective positions. The coup the Sooners are trying to pull, however, isn’t Charlie Strong-level recruiting; it’s almost a hostile takeover.
In light of the recent and numerous struggles — lack of a Big 12 title game, non-existence of a true 12-team league and financial difficulties with the Longhorn Network — of the youngest Power 5 conference they’re bound to, OU seemingly has taken the matter of fixing their offensive and defensive deficiencies into their own hands.
Through pounding the proverbial pavement of little-known Texas towns, the Sooners have created the greatest asset to sustained success.
That depth shows itself in the transfer of Murray, the commitment of Robison and the brilliance of Baker Mayfield, examples of the longevity of their championship potential.
Murray’s championship pedigree may have been cultivated at Texas’ Allen High School, but it can blossom into a NCAA title berth with the skills of the Reagor and Rambo, a Cedar Hill High School junior receiver, stretching defenses and wrecking havoc on Division I SEC, Big Ten and PAC-12 secondaries.
Rambo’s 2015 season netted him 434 yards and five touchdowns on a team loaded with talent and garnered serious interest from 29 collegiate teams, including the Big 12’s Texas Christian University, University of Texas and Texas Tech University and the SEC’s University of Auburn, Missouri and Arkansas and independent Notre Dame University.
Like Rambo, Reagor put up gaudy numbers under the tutelage of Indians head coach Jon Kitna and offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Damola Adeniji.
He racked up 1,108 yards on 64 receptions and scored 13 touchdowns during his 2015 campaign, displaying a NFL-level catch radius during games against Ennis, Lancaster and Mansfield Lake Ridge high schools.
Both receivers have the ability to use top-level speed and route-running prowess to create distance between the football and defender, allowing them to give accurate quarterbacks like Murray and Robison windows to fit the ball into.
The addition of Murray, the heir-apparent to the quarterback throne when senior Baker Mayfield breaks to the NFL, as well as explosive receivers Reagor and Rambo, gives the Sooners an aerial attack to add to Samaje Perine’s powerful run game.
Perine, who pounds the rock relentlessly by running between the tackles, breaking to the outside and running through and past defenders, set the NCAA record with a 427 single-game performance ran for 1,349 yards and 16 scores, despite battling injuries. Provided he doesn’t disappear during the early rounds of the 2017 draft, his senior year could pair him with the expected cash crop Norman is currently courting.
It isn’t only offense that would power the dream-scene Sooners, the recruitment of the cornerback duo of Broiles and Bandy ensure high flying offenses like Oregon stay grounded. Draper, Oklahoma’s linebacker extraordinaire, will ensure holes in the front stay plugged.
The very essence of the problems the Big 12 has had stems from a lack of overwhelming talent needed to topple the Alabama’s, Ohio State’s and Florida State’s on modern day, post BCS-era college football. The conference’s last NCAA title came via the 2005 UT Longhorns — a team loaded with future NFL talent.
Eight future NFL players, including Brian Orakpo, Jamal Charles, Vince Young, Colt McCoy, dotted the UT’s roster and helped the conference steamroll rival conference foes en route to OU’s first BCS title since Tom Osborne’s Nebraska Cornhuskers shared the title with Michigan in 1997.
That's why a recruiting coup of this magnitude, which addresses needs on both sides of the snap, leads Sooners’ fans to wish for the second coming of 2005.
It could be more than a one-and-done championship, with Murray then Robison at the helm, however. With a talented offense to command and a defense that could thrive on short drives and turnovers, the Sooners could topple the legend of Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide, create a dynasty and be the Big 12’s savior in one felled swoop.