Insider Recruiting Q&A - OU, Ohio St, & More
Posted Jan 28, 2012

1) What's the biggest recruiting need the coaching staff has to address and 2) what would make this a successful recruiting season?

Recruiting 2012 - Key Questions

The Inside Info - Part One

What's happening this recruiting season? Several Scout publishers provide their insider info on the key questions that matter to the real world of college football.

- Recruiting 2012 - The Key Questions, OU, Ohio St, Utah, Texas Tech, & more
- Recruiting 2012 - The Key Questions, Texas, Washington, Oregon, State, & more
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Alabama, Oregon, Boise State, & more

- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions

CFN Top Prospects for 2012
- No. 1 to 50 | No. 51 to 100 | No. 101 to 150
- No. 151 to 200No. 201 to 250 | No. 251 to 300
- Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Receivers
- Tight Ends | Off. Tackles | Guards & Centers 
- Def. Ends | Def. Tackles | Linebackers | Corners | Safeties 
- 2009 CFN Top 150 | 2010 CFN Top 200 | 2011 CFN Top 300 

Q: 1) What's the biggest recruiting need the coaching staff has to address and 2) what would make this a successful recruiting season?


1) The biggest need the coaching staff needs to address is defensive back because of the inconsistency there last season and the amount of big plays the Sooner secondary allowed. You're seeing a heavy emphasis in recruiting there down the stretch, and the Sooners need to land a couple commitments to bolster that department for the future. Additionally, OU needs help at running back after Jermie Calhoun, Jonathon Miller and now Brandon Williams' transfer. Dominique Whaley's health status is uncertain coming off his broken ankle, so OU has hit to the recruiting trails there with recent commitment David Smith, along with Alex Ross.

2) It would be a successful recruiting season should the Sooners lock up a solid corner or two down the stretch. It would be even more of an added bonus if OU could pick up one of the two major targets still on the market that they're pursuing at other positions, including the nation's No. 1 wide receiver in Dorial Green-Beckham and four-star offensive tackle Zach Banner. - Joey Helmer, Sooners Illustrated


1) There were two huge areas on concern for the 2012 class at quarterback and offensive line, and both have been addressed. Southern California product Travis Wilson came on board first and is an elite signal caller with a high ceiling. While he'll take a bit of time to develop, he has the tools to be an All Conference star down the line. Local product Chase Hansen, the Gatorade State Player of the Year, was being recruiting by multiple schools on the defensive side of the ball, but went with Utah and the opportunity to play quarterback. Hansen is the more college-ready of the two.

On the offensive line, Utah loses its two starting tackles and doesn't have much on the current roster to plug in. The Utes have addressed one spot with JC lineman Marc Pouvave, who could end up at either tackle spot, and are in the mix for two others junior college guys in Carlos Lozano and Will Latu. If Latu comes to Utah, he'll be handed the left tackle spot.

The Utes also built up quite a bit of depth with five high school offensive lineman including 4 star Jeremiah Poutasi and a couple of sleepers in Zach Lindsay (who they flipped from BYU), and Lio Lafaele. If the Utes can somehow flip current Stanford commit and local kid, Brandon Fanaika, who is wavering on his commitment, and cement things with four star Utah lean Hiva Lutui, they will solidify an incoming offensive line class that has to be considered one of the top 10 in the country.

2) It's already been a successful recruiting season, and looks like there will be even more good news as we inch towards signing day. Utah is in on 15 or so remaining prospects, with a great chance to land 7 or 8 of them. The major areas of need have been addressed, but a few more cornerbacks and linemen on both sides of the ball would really round out the class perfectly. If they can grab two of the four remaining cornerbacks on their board in Alphonso Marsh, Brandon Beaver, Darion Monroe, and Raymond Ford, and snag at least one of the two remaining JC offensive lineman, the coaches will be more than thrilled with who they've been able to bring in.

Utah has gone head to head with the likes of UCLA, USC, Washington, Cal, and Oregon and won recruiting battles this year. Combine that with a complete domination of BYU for in-state players, and Utah now has to be looked at as an emerging recruiting power in the West. - Brian Swinney, Inside The Utes

Texas Tech

1. Biggest Need: Defense, defense, and once more with feeling, DEFENSE! The Red Raiders desperately need help at every single position on that side of the ball, and if they don't get the sort of players who can help immediately, Tommy Tuberville's Tech tenure may end sooner rather than later.

2. What will make the recruiting class a success? Again, the answer is impact players on defense. Pass rushers, run stuffers, shut-down corners, tackling machines--this defense needs two of each. – Joseph Yeager,

Ohio State

The biggest need this year wasn't necessarily a position. It was overcoming the loss of ultra-successful head coach Jim Tressel, turning around the first losing season since 1988 and mitigating NCAA sanctions that include a 2012 postseason ban. By all accounts, check, check and checkmate for Urban Meyer, who in less than two months has taken an Ohio State recruiting effort that was dead in the water to a consensus top-five class. – Mark Rea, Buckeye Sports Bulletin

Arizona State

1. It would be hard to pinpoint one specific area of need. A change to a 3-4 defensive alignment requires the team to recruit specific type of lineman, as well as beefing up the linebacker corps. The depth chart at safety is suspect, as it is at running back and wide receiver. All in all, judging by the recruiting process, it appears that the staff is perhaps putting a little more emphasis at running back and linebacker in this class.

2. The five commits from Long Beach (Calif.) Poly HS have been the core of this 2012 class from day one, and ASU is in a pretty good shape to secure all those pledges despite the coaching change. In the last few years, ASU has struggled to land the premier prospects in its backyard, but is poised to change that perception as Scottsdale Saguaro RB D.J. Foster is expected to commit to the Sun Devils.

Those two scenarios materializing should certainly give this recruiting class some measure of success. If the Sun Devils can additionally have WR Darreus Rogers decommit from USC in their favor, as well as being able to sign the nation's top JC RB, Damien Williams, then it goes without saying that this recruiting class will go down as one of the best ones the Sun Devils have assembled in recent memory. – Hod Rabino,

North Carolina

1) The biggest recruiting need is the "bandit" position. With the new coaching staff changing its defensive system to a 4-2-5, the current roster doesn't have any prototypical "bandit" players.

2) In addition to adding at least one "bandit" prospect, UNC has to hold on to all of its current commitments from the previous staff. If any of the current commitments sign elsewhere (i.e. CB Tyreece Jiles), it'll be too late to fill that void with this class. - Don Callahan,

Southern Miss

With the coaching change at Southern Miss, getting to signing day with 25 quality players will be the best case scenario. The Eagles have lost some commitments to other programs during the transition and as a result some new prospects have had to be located. The new staff was able to secure the commitment of All-American quarterback Anthony Alford, but the recruiting process will not end on signing day for him. Coach Ellis Johnson will need to stay on him all the way to fall camp, because he is a highly coveted major league baseball prospect. – Steve Robertson,