Lincoln Riley has scored his first impactful commitment since taking over the Oklahoma Sooners program June 7.
Ron Tatum III, the No. 77-ranked prospect in the class of 2018, flipped his commitment to Oklahoma from archrival Texas on Monday.
I'm coming back home......‼️⭕️🙌🏽 pic.twitter.com/7F4YmfVsAL— Ron Tatum III‼️🎯 (@rontatum3_) June 12, 2017
Tatum III's commitment comes at the perfect time for the Sooners, with questions surrounding the future of the program in the post-Bob Stoops era. The flip of Tatum III from Texas to the home state Sooners makes Riley's first commitment as head coach in Norman even more impactful, as he beat the hated rival in what was a must-get recruit for the first-year head coach and his staff.
When Tatum III committed to Texas on April 26, coming on the heels of ESPN 300 quarterback Cameron Rising's flipping to Texas from Oklahoma, the Sooners had lost nearly all of the momentum they enjoyed in the 2017 cycle, coming off back-to-back 11-win seasons and top-five AP Poll finishes.
Riley and staff have now regained some much-needed momentum with the flip of Tatum III, and in doing so, they might have slowed the momentum building in Tom Herman's first full class in Austin.
Tatum III becomes the fourth ESPN 300 commitment for the Sooners in the 2018 cycle, joining offensive tackle Brey Walker, running back T.J. Pledger and quarterback Tanner Mordecai. With Tatum III in the fold, Oklahoma has commitments from the top two prospects in the state, with Walker being No. 1 and Tatum III No. 2.
The Sooners inked the top three prospects from the state in the 2017 class: cornerback Justin Broiles, linebacker Levi Draper and cornerback Tre Brown.
The Sooners have a number of top prospects remaining on the board, with designs on back-to-back top-10 classes, including ESPN 300 receiver Kamryn Babb and defensive lineman Ronnie Perkins out of Missouri, receivers Jaylen Waddle and Brennan Eagles out of Texas, athlete Jaquayln Crawford, offensive guard Curtis Dunlap Jr. and offensive tackle Darrell Simpson.