Chat with Jake Trotter
Welcome to SoonerNation! On Monday, writer Jake Trotter stops by to chat about everything Oklahoma.
Trotter joined ESPN.com in 2011 after four years with The Oklahoman covering OU and Big 12 football. Before that, he worked at the Austin American-Statesman and Middletown (Ohio) Journal. Trotter grew up in Oklahoma City and graduated from Washington & Lee (Va.) University.
Send your questions now and join Trotter Monday at 4 p.m. ET!
Christopher (Kalamazoo, MI)
Jake, I know this is more up Bob's alley, but with Keith Ford and Matt Dimon on board now, who do you think is OU's next commitment?
Bob Przybylo (4:21 PM)
Christopher, it's an interesting question. There are certainly names like DT Justin Manning and DE D.J. Ward that look like are OU leans. However, I can't see anything happening too quickly. It's going to be a waiting game, no doubt.
Bob Przybylo (4:22 PM)
Apologize about the mix up, Sooners fans. Do my best to fill in here for the final 40 minutes
Jose (El Paso, TX )
How effective do you think Landry will be this year? Will he make a difference to last years performance?
Bob Przybylo (4:24 PM)
Landry Jones appears to be very fired up this spring. Jones wasn't the source of the problems for OU last season although a lot of people did like to place the blame on him. Jones has the respect of his teammates, and he should be ready for a huge senior season.
Roy Hobbs (New York, NY)
The OU baseball team is falling apart. Are they going to make a heroic comeback during conference play or are they going to continue to slide until the season is a total bust?
Bob Przybylo (4:25 PM)
It's way too early in the season to hit the panic button, but the Sooners have lost five in a row and getting swept at home vs. Texas never feels good to anybody. OU still having trouble with getting timely hits. But I really like Dillon Overton as the No. 1 starter, big-time future ahead for him.
Josh (Washington DC)
Hi Jake,I'm a Sooner fan out here in DC, and one of the things I've been wondering about is how the recruiting of the east coast kids has gone since the switch back to Mike Stoops. Specifically, I am wondering about Leon McQuay, a Safety and teammate of 2012 commit Eric Striker. I know we've also offered several Maryland kids. Any updates you can give would be appreciated.
Bob Przybylo (4:28 PM)
OU hasn't been a major player with the Maryland standouts Dorian O'Daniel and Kendall Fuller, but at least it made the offer. Leon McQuay appears to be a Florida lean, but he has been open to visiting other campuses and has visited other schools. So far OU hasn't been too high on his radar but things could change, but right now, not looking too likely for McQuay & Sooners.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
If you could only have one, who would you choose, Ryan Broyles or Mark Clayton?
Bob Przybylo (4:30 PM)
That's a heck of a question, Tony. I like it. Clayton brought the 'wow' factor like every game. He was a joy to watch. Broyles was so consistent & was the glue. Watching him mature off the field was as much fun as seeing him progress on it. Making me pick? Clayton...by 'that' much.
Jimmy Chitwood (Hickory, IN)
March Madness just doesn't have the same luster anymore in the state of Oklahoma... What does Lon Kruger need to do to put OU back in the Madness? Can any of his incoming recruits make the kind of impact needed to propel us back into relevancy?
Bob Przybylo (4:31 PM)
Kruger is trying. The 2012 class isn't bad for what OU had to work with in terms of SGs Buddy Hield and Je'lon Hornbeak. A huge key would be if Kruger could snatch up 2013 PG Stevie Clark from Oklahoma City Douglass. That would bring local interest back to the team in no time.
How is recruiting doing, anything new?
Bob Przybylo (4:34 PM)
Not too much to report. Spring evaluations will shake things up like crazy. The honesty of the OU coaches has impressed a lot of recruits, and it's also made them realize they don't need to worry about a lack of an offer at this point. Recruits don't feel like they're being mistreated by OU coaches.
Colonel Sanders (Corbin, KY)
Kenny Stills is tasty! Just like my chicken! If I set the line at 1,100 yards w/ 13 TD's for the 2012 season... would you take the over or the under?
Bob Przybylo (4:36 PM)
I would take the under, but nothing against Stills or his ability. I see people like Kameel Jackson and Trey Metoyer putting up good numbers, and I'm a firm believer either Sterling Shepard or Durron Neal (or both) are going to make an immediate impact. The ball will be spread around.
Derrin (Plano, TX)
Now that OU and Justin Manning are now "on the same page". Will the defensive tackle make his commitment sooner rather than later?
Bob Przybylo (4:37 PM)
No, not at this time. Manning just came back from LSU's junior day, and he seems pretty content to wait. He has mentioned waiting until December. I have no idea if he can last that long, but the Sooners need to show constant interest in Manning. Do not want him to be one that gets away.
Michael (Long Beach, CA)
If you had to make a guess now, who would the top 3 receivers be starting next year?
Bob Przybylo (4:39 PM)
I'm going to go with Kenny Stills, Kameel Jackson and Jaz Reynolds. Yeah, I'm boring like that. I do think Trey Metoyer could sneak in there, though, and that the WR competition is gonna be fun to watch all season.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
The Sooners appear to be in a battle with USC for both Max Browne and Joe Mathis. How do you rate OU's chances of landing these two top recruits?
Bob Przybylo (4:40 PM)
Pretty good on both fronts and actually better with Browne than for Mathis. Nebraska is a big-time player, too, for Mathis and his cousin, Su'a Cravens. Mathis does want to visit OU in the summer so don't rule him out. Browne's relationship with Josh Heupel is really good and only got better from the visit.
Bob, there's a horns poster on the B12 blog claiming malcontent within the OU program and it's having a negative impact on recruiting this year. Is there any truth to this or just a fool starting rumors?
Bob Przybylo (4:43 PM)
That rumor ran wild in December, especially following the Mario Edwards' negative comments about OU and Norman. But talk to the junior day kids and talk to Max Browne, um, I'm just not seeing it right now. The Stoops house has been restored and defensive recruits are mentioning the energy that Tim Kish and Mike Stoops are bringing to the table, too.
Jake Trotter (unable to be located today)
Who is the meanest recruit you've ever met? As in, the dude is so nasty mean that he kind of scared you...
Bob Przybylo (4:46 PM)
I like this question. Most misleading is easily Michael Onuoha, a 2012 signee. He looks menacing as can be and there were a couple of photos I took of him in 2011 that had me scared. But Onuoha is a great kid who really appreciates what the last couple of months have offered him. Now we'll just have to see if he takes advantage of the situation.
Jose (El Paso, Tx )
Who do you feel will be stepping up for the wide receivers this year?
Bob Przybylo (4:47 PM)
I'm one of the frontrunners for the Kameel Jackson bandwagon. Loved what I saw late last year, and simply got that feeling he's gonna be a name to remember. As for the 2012 stellar group, I don't think there's a thing Durron Neal cannot do on a football field.
Derrin (Plano, TX)
Wow! Did not know Cravens and Mathis were cousins? Is this a potentail package deal with one school landing both prospects?
Bob Przybylo (4:49 PM)
They've talked about it, but you just never know. If it's a package deal, OU, USC and Nebraska should be feeling pretty good right now. Ask me right now? Trojans are clearly in the lead for both of them.
Have you heard anything from Bob on the Gardner situation? How close is he to qualifying?
Bob Przybylo (4:51 PM)
Stoops won't comment on situations like that, but Gardner has been more than willing to answer any questions on Twitter. Gardner went nuts last week w/ RTs from everybody blasting him for his arrest. The last time I spoke to him he said he was on track to qualify. Hope to check in with Gardner soon.
Have you heard anything else on whether or not Heupel will be on the sidelines next year? Landry just needs to be a little more emotional with his team mates, IMO, like he was in bowl game. I feel that this would help him be more embraced by the OU faithfull.
Jake Trotter (the real one) (4:53 PM)
Guys, wanted to hop on and apologize for missing the chat today. For whatever reason, I was under the impression Bob was handling, but it was clearly my mistake. I promise to host the chat of the century next week.
Bob Przybylo (4:53 PM)
It's interesting you bring up Jones being more emotional. It is something I have said for a while, but it might not be in his DNA. His teammates have his back, obviously, but I think the fans wanna see that fire and passion. But you can't force it. You can't be who you're not...we'll see.
Lon Kruger (Norman, OK)
Who's the biggest sleeper recruit in the state this year and can I sign him?
Macho Man Randy Savage (Snap into a slim jim)
In a battle royal free-for-all, do you think you stand a chance in the ring against the likes of Beaver, Trotter, and dare I say, Chatman? Trotter once told me that you don't stand a chance...
Jake Trotter (the real one) (4:54 PM)
Beavers is not exactly the Ultimate Warrior, but I fear Bob's chances in such a venue. What say you, Bob?
Bob Przybylo (4:55 PM)
A couple of weeks ago would have said the 2012 in-state class is done. However, it will be interesting to see what happens at Tulsa and the coaching change there. PF Dre Wright (Lawton, Okla./Eisenhower) would be a huge 'get' if he were to leave Tulsa. Wright improved immensely in his senior season.
Michael (Long Beach, CA)
Given the QB's on campus and the possibility of getting Max Browne, is Trevor Knight kind of the forgotten guy in this mix? Doe Knight 2013 = Keith Nichol 2007?
Bob Przybylo (4:57 PM)
Never thought of it that way, Michael. Trevor Knight has the love and support of the ENTIRE 2012 class. He is proving himself a leader before he steps on campus. Knight has also been at some of the OU spring practices. He gave up his early enrollment spot to TE Taylor McNamara & is done with HS so Knight has been visible at OU. He's a great dual-threat QB that I don't see getting lost in the shuffle at this point.
Who on the DL do you think needs to step up for us to be able to stop the run and get pressure on the QB?
Bob Przybylo (4:59 PM)
I'm so intrigued to see what happens at DE with Frank Alexander and Ronnell Lewis gone. Heard a lot of good things about juco signee Chaz Nelson. From talking to him during his recruitment, he seemed like a player where the light bulb went on for him. He knows what he has to do and now he is doing it.
Bob Przybylo (5:00 PM)
Appreciate all the questions as always guys. Again, apologize about the mix up. However, don't worry, Jake will be back next week. And as always, visit soonernationespn.com for more great OU sports coverage.