Fresh off a surprising victory over the Alabama Crimson Tide in the Sugar Bowl on Thursday night, the Oklahoma Sooners grabbed a big commitment on Friday afternoon, securing a pledge from Jenks (Okla.) defensive tackle Marquise Overton, as broken by Demetric Warren of Varsity Preps.
A member of the 2015 recruiting class, Overton is a 6'1, 305-pounder rated as a consensus four-star prospect and ranked as the No. 14 defensive tackle nationally by the 247Sports Composite rankings, as well as the No. 3 player in Oklahoma and the No. 106 player overall.
Overton pledged to the Sooners over offers from Baylor, Illinois, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Oregon State, Texas Tech, Toledo and Tulsa. The commitment was hardly a surprise, however -- all seven of the predictions in the Crystal Ball for Overton had him ending up in crimson and cream.
As Overton told Varsity Preps, he's a lifelong Oklahoma fan who was positively influenced by the big win in the Sugar Bowl.
"Seeing that big win they had against Alabama and their improvement on defense especially how Coach Montgomery has the defensive line playing," Overton told Varsity Preps when asked what factored into his decision.
An undersized defensive tackle at 6'1, Overton is powerful out of his lower body, as evidenced by his ability to roll through his hips and to get a strong punch on opposing offensive linemen, as well as a solid vertical leap of 24 inches at the Dallas NIke Camp last spring.
If the initial punch for Overton isn't enough, he can keep working his hands on his bullrush to displace opponents and eventually separate to make plays. The bullrush is easily Overton's favorite move and his upper body strength combines with the power out of his legs to make him an irresistible force for many interior linemen at the high school level.
Up and down the line of scrimmage, Overton doesn't have elite quickness for his position, but he was also at a college-ready weight at over 300 pounds before his sophomore year of high school ended, so his 5.06 shuttle time is hardly poor for someone of his size. Overall, the newest Oklahoma commit is a good athlete for his position.
If the Sooners opt to stick with a 3-4 defense, Overton projects as a nose tackle who could eventually weigh in at 320 or more pounds. Otherwise, it might make sense for the Jenks product to stay as lean as possible and work to improve his quickness.
To become an effective pass rusher, Overton will have to develop another move besides the bullrush, but he still looks like a player who can effectively collapse pockets because of his combination of strength and persistence.
Now with four pledges in the class for 2015, Oklahoma is stocking up in the trenches with Allen (Texas) jumbo athlete Bobby Evans now rated as an offensive tackle, big offensive guard commit Josh Wariboko of Oklahoma City (Okla.) Casady School, and Houston (Texas) Cypress Falls defensive tackle Du'Vonta Lampkin, who would pair nicely next to Overton in a 4-3 defense.