A rough first season on the gridiron for Brent Venables, and his staff didn't slow them down one bit on the recruiting trail for 2023. And it's unlikely to hinder anything they do in the 2024 cycle as well.
A month removed from a strong performance in the Cheez-It Bowl, the Oklahoma coaching and recruiting staff have been grinding in preparation for this past weekend's "Junior Day" on campus at the University of Oklahoma.
The Sooners hosted a number of top prospects in the 2024 recruiting class, including four-star quarterback Michael Hawkins, four-star running back Jeremy Payne, four-star OL Casey Poe, and four-star safety Aaron Flowers. Each has been trending in the Oklahoma Sooners' favor.
Venables and his staff also hosted four-star in-state product Xadavien Sims, a defensive lineman out of Durant, Texas. Michigan State is heavily pursuing Sims in addition to David Stone, who will be coming to Norman in a couple of months. These will be two crucial recruiting battles for the Sooners, especially after losing Norman's Bai Jobe to the Spartans.
The Sooners' staff has shown that they can recruit in the little more than a year they've spent in Norman. This weekend was a big opportunity to make some headway in some notable recruitments.
Here's how a number of those prospects reacted to their time in Norman.
Father of 4-Star QB Michael Hawkins also with 5-Star TE Davon Mitchell
4-Star RB Jeremy Payne
4-Star EDGE Zina Umeozulu
4-Star WR Zion Kearney
4-Star LB Payton Pierce
4-Star Safety Aaron Flowers
4-Star OL Casey Poe
4-Star DL Nigel Smith
K Liam Evans
4-Star RB James Peoples
4-Star OL Max Anderson
4-Star RB Caden Durham
4-Star DL Xadavien Sims
3-Star LB Tyanthony Smith
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Story originally appeared on Sooners Wire