Throughout the recruiting process, the Texas Longhorns have been the leader for Dallas (Texas) Skyline linebacker Anthony Wheeler, but that all changed over the weekend when he attended a Junior Day for the Oklahoma Sooners.
A consensus four-star prospect, Wheeler is the No. 8 outside linebacker in the country by the 247Sports Composite rankings, the No. 23 player in the state of Texas, and the No. 154 player nationally. In addition to Texas and Oklahoma, Wheeler holds offers from Alabama, Baylor, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Ole Miss, SMU, and Texas Tech.
Back in September, Wheeler had named the Longhorns his leader and as a result, his 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions have long had been unanimous in their expectations that the 6'2, 225-pounder would end up in Austin, a fact that didn't change after Wheeler seemed to enjoy a Junior Day at Texas on February 22.
A growing relationship with Oklahoma linebacker Frank Shannon has given Wheeler more insight into the Oklahoma program from a fellow Skyline product, as Shannon played safety for the Dallas powerhouse program and emerged as a difference-maker during the 2013 season, according to SoonerScoop.com.
Then, it was one-on-time with head coach Bob Stoops and linebacker coach Tim Kish that helped sell Wheeler on the Sooners, prompting him to tell the Oklahoma Rivals affiliate that, "I think I would put them over Texas in my top."
Those comments represent the first major change in his recruitment, which could have some other twists and turns if Wheeler makes it to Alabama and the Crimson Tide make a strong impression.
For right now, it looks like the recruitment of Wheeler will come down to Oklahoma and Texas, the Red River rivals who meet in the Cotton Bowl every year, but haven't battled head-to-head for recruits as much in recent years as the Sooners have strategically withdrawn a bit from the state of Texas to focus their efforts on recruiting nationally, especially California.