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New Oklahoma Commit Courtney Garnett Would Be a Major Addition to Sooners D-Line

Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops watches his team warm up before the NCAA college football Sugar Bowl against Alabama in New Orleans, Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Patrick Semansky/Associated Press
Ben KerchevalCollege Football Lead WriterFebruary 3, 2014

One of the fun things about recruiting is that it serves as an extension of on-field rivalries. 

Case in point: Oklahoma defensive tackle commit Courtney Garnett. 

Garnett, from New Orleans, La. (St. Augustine), was committed to Texas until Jan. 7. Late last week, and two weeks after visiting Norman, Okla., Garnett verbally committed to the Sooners. He's the second prospect from St. Augustine to commit to Oklahoma, the other being offensive tackle Joseph Paul. 

Garnett is a nice pickup for Oklahoma—if head coach Bob Stoops can keep him. 

Garnett took an official visit to Notre Dame over the weekend and Irisheyes.com, Notre Dame's Scout.com affiliate, reports that the Irish are giving Garnett a lot to think about (subscription required).

If Garnett signs with Oklahoma, though, he'll give the Sooners a boost along the defensive line. Other than defensive ends Brandon Glenn and Dwayne Orso, Oklahoma has no other D-line commits. Unless a big name is added, Garnett will be the highlight of that group. 

What Garnett would provide is instant depth, though the Sooners are fairly young in the interior of their D-line. 

Oklahoma, much like Texas, should be good along that line next season. That hasn't been the case recently. Depth was a concern along the D-line in 2013 and the Sooners struggled against run at times (namely against Texas). The season-ending back injury to defensive tackle Jordan Phillips didn't help matters, either. 

The pass rush should once again be a strength with players like defensive end Geneo Grissom and linebacker Eric Striker returning, so it will be interesting to see how much Oklahoma's defense improves against the run. With more depth in the interior of the line, Garnett could see some playing time right away. Or, Stoops may elect to redshirt him now that depth isn't an issue. 

Holding on to Garnett, especially after scooping him up from Texas, would be one of Stoops' best recruiting victories for the '14 class. 

 

Ben Kercheval is the lead writer for Big 12 football. All rankings courtesy of 247Sports

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