Not gonna lie. This is impressive.
Hope everyone had a good, safe 4th of July. As you likely just saw on Twitter, Oklahoma has landed a commitment from one of the more highly sought after recruits in the Houston area in 4-Star DB, Bryson Washington.
I Would Like To Thank My Family, My Friends, And God For Putting Me In The Position I Am In Today✍🏽 pic.twitter.com/QTukjy6Nkc— ¹⁵ Bryson Washington (@ChasingDream8) July 5, 2019
Why is this a big deal? Well, lets peek at his rankings for a second. A top-150 prospect by Rivals; top-200 by 247Sports. And while that doesn’t sound too uncommon, consider for a second that Alex Grinch is inheriting a defense that ranked 114th overall last season. This isn’t a name many expected Oklahoma to be on — ESPECIALLY a high-profile name out of the Houston area. Don’t get me wrong here, it hasn’t been that Oklahoma hasn’t tried to recruit that area of Texas. It’s that when it comes down to winning a recruiting battle for a major defensive recruit, there just hasn’t been much success. You could argue Jamal Morris or David Ugwoegbu were big wins last cycle, and I’d be inclined to agree as both were solid prospects from around the area. However, a top-safety with offers from Texas, Alabama, and Clemson coming to Oklahoma? That’s something nearly unheard of in this age of recruiting. I’d consider this nearly in the same sphere as Oklahoma going into St. Thomas Aquinas or Mater Dei, the area is that type of recruiting hotbed.
So let’s get back to Bryson Washington and exactly what he brings to the table. Listed at 6’2, 196 lbs and 40-time that ranges in 4.5’s, Washington is the ideal fit for what Alex Grinch hopes achieve with his defense, and in particular his secondary. Grinch wants guys that can run (really bring speed at the top of the defense) and he wants to disrupt passing lanes. Washington’s 4.5 range speed is more than ideal to keep up with high-level college receivers. At 6’2, Washington can squeeze that passing lanes and windows that have been otherwise wide open in past seasons.
When it comes the safety position, you want a guy with instincts and Washington shows them. A lot of guys can play the ball deep, especially at the high school level. What stands out is Washington’s recognition to jump the intermediate routes and swing passes. That’s not something Oklahoma’s have become accustomed to seeing in recent season’s. Even more, Washington shows a knack for playing a physical brand of defense. I’d say it’s fairly comparable to that of 2019 DB, Jeremiah Criddell, even for a guy entering his senior season.
The most pressing matter Alex Grinch has faced since arriving in Norman was to get the safety position off the floor of the college football world — Washington is a step in the right direction in many ways. It brings in top-level talent to a position in desperate need of an overhaul. It also shows that Grinch doesn’t have to wait around to build his name and system up. He can pull in elite talent now — that should be a welcome sign to Sooners fans.