Oklahoma does not come to mind when you think of states that are great sources of gridiron talent. It can be a little inconsistent in producing top-end talent, and the talent pool can be a little shallow at times, but Oklahoma is a bit of a sleeper spot. The state has produced fine prospects like quarterback Sam Bradford, tight end Jermaine Gresham, defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, and wide receivers Ryan Broyles and Justin Blackmon.
The 2011 class is actually the first since 2006 to produce fewer than two ESPNU 150 prospects, but the talent available in this class is not bad. Oklahoma has a pair of four-star prospects in athlete Josh Turner (Oklahoma City, Okla./Millwood) and outside linebacker Dominique Petties (Duncan, Okla.) as well as a solid group of three-star prospects.
ATH Josh Turner
The Longhorns don't go out of state for many prospects, but it's easy to see why Texas was interested in him. A great athlete, Turner has playmaker potential in all three phases of the game. For a Texas team that is struggling this season, especially on offense, it may be tough to resist the urge to play this Under Armour All-American as a wide receiver. He has great ball skills, the ability to pull away from defenders with great initial speed, and he can make defenders miss while creating big plays after the catch. While he could play offense, we think he may be a little better fit for the Longhorns on defense at cornerback. He has fluid hips and great recovery burst. He has the speed to stick with receivers in man coverage and can also jump well and play the ball. Turner will need to develop some of the finer details of whatever position he plays, since he can just "out-athlete" opponents at times at the high school level. Simply put, though, he is a good athlete and a good addition to an in-state heavy Texas class.
Remember this name
DE Hunter Davis (Choctaw, Okla./Choctaw)
The Tulsa Golden Hurricane landed an in-state prospect who could develop into a real disruptive defender. Davis is an active and explosive player who can quickly get off the ball and cause problems. He can get into and under the pads of blockers and knock them back. He is a physical and fun player to watch, but he still needs to work on aspects of his game to be a more complete player. Competing with fellow in-state FBS programs Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, it can be tough for Tulsa to land some of the top players in the state, but we like the pickup of Davis.
Taking up residence
Here are the colleges that are doing the best with prospects from Oklahoma:
The top 11 prospects in the Sooners' 2011 class are from out-of-state, but that doesn't mean they have not been a little active within their own borders. A trio of three-star in-state prospects are committed to the Sooners, led by a pair of quarterbacks. Kendal Thompson (Moore, Okla./Southmoore), the son of former Oklahoma quarterback Charles Thompson, is a terrific athlete, and Archie Bradley (Broken Arrow, Okla.) is a dual-sport athlete with a big arm.
Many programs come into the state of Texas to pluck gridiron talent, including the programs from Oklahoma, which do very well in Texas. The Longhorns, who have the benefit of residing in the talent-rich state, recruit almost exclusively in-state, but have given the Sooners and Cowboys a taste of their own medicine by heading north into Oklahoma to land Turner, the state's top prospect. The four-star athlete is the only prospect from Oklahoma in the Longhorns' class, but he was a good out-of-state grab.
The Golden Hurricane, who can boast about a recent win over Notre Dame, have been active in-state. Tulsa has seven in-state prospects on board, led by Davis and three-star outside linebacker Trent Martin (Jenks, Okla./Jenks), who is an active run defender.
Stanford has landed a prospect from Oklahoma for the first time in recent memory. The Cardinal got a commitment from tough three-star guard Garrett Gladd (Sallisaw, Okla./Sallisaw). They had another commitment from an Oklahoma prospect, defensive end Daniel Davis (Norman, Okla./North), who goes to high school in the shadows of the University the Oklahoma, but he recently decommitted.
Craig Haubert is the recruiting coordinator for ESPN Recruiting and has more than a decade of coaching experience. Don't forget to follow him on Twitter.