Jayhawk Recruiting Corner: Joe Randle and a Few Recruiting Tidbits

C.W. O'BrienCorrespondent IJuly 13, 2009

KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 29:  Head coach Mark Mangino of the Kansas Jayhawks watches the action during the game against the Missouri Tigers on November 29, 2008 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Joseph Randle Update
While this is far from being breaking news, there have been a few recent updates with the recruitment of Wichita Southeast running back/defensive back Joseph Randle. 
Randle is a four-star RB prospect on both Rivals and Scout, in addition to being on the ESPN 150 watch-list. He has been listed as anywhere from the 16th-20th best running back prospect in the country. 
Randle currently has offers from colleges in the Big 12, Big Ten, SEC, ACC, and Pac-10.  Despite all of the attention that he has been getting from colleges on the national level, he has indicated throughout his recruiting that he would like to stay a little closer to home. 
He has indicated previously that he likes KU, KSU, Mizzou, and that Oklahoma would be a dream school for him. 
There have also been rumors floating around the Wichita area that Randle and Bishop Carroll QB Blake Bell wanted to play college football together. When Bell gave a verbal to OU, it looked like a match made in Boomer-Sooner heaven. 
Then in late June, that dream took a hit. 
The Sooners have received verbals from two of the nations top three all-purpose running backs. While I am sure that Bob Stoops would gladly pick up a third running back for the Class of 2010, especially one as athletic and versatile as Randle, one has to wonder whether or not there is space. 
As of now, OU has verbals from 15 prospects. 
That leaves a maximum of 10 more prospects available (12 if OU signs two JuCo players that enroll in the spring).  Yes that leaves 10-12 scholarships still available, but the Sooners still need to fill holes at wide receiver, both strong and weak-side defensive end, outside linebacker, inside linebacker, and cornerback. 
In all likelihood, Bob Stoops is probably going to try to sign two more wide receivers, two more defensive ends, two corners, and at least one inside and one outside linebacker. That is eight scholarships right there. Throw in the fact that OU hasn't signed 25 or more prospects since 2006, and OU may be done recruiting once those holes are filled. 
One also must wonder if there are enough carries to accommodate three solid running backs. In 2008, OU used two primary running backs and a third back in relief.  Chris Brown and DeMarcco Murray picked up the bulk of the carries, and that led Mossis Madu becoming a slot receiver last spring so that he could see the field more often in 2009.
There just aren't enough touches to go around.
In recent months, former KU RB/DB John Randle has indicated that his brother is highly interested in KU, K-State, and Mizzou.  KSU has already received a verbal from fellow Wichita stand-out DeMarcus Robinson for the Class of 2010. 
It has been known for quite a while that it will be next to impossible for any team to sign both Wichita products.  Mizzou will have five underclassman RB's on their roster in 2009, and starter Derrick Washington will still have eligibility remaining when Randle hits the field.
All indications point to Randle taking his time, completing his visits, and picking a school that is the right fit for him. 

In Other Recruiting News:

Still no word yet on either Carey Fortson or Donovan Vestal. 

Both have indicated that they favor KU and are expected to commit to KU this month.  Fortson's visit was last weekend, but no news about a potential commitment has been forthcoming.  Personally, I am excited with both prospects. They both bring speed and athleticism to the table.

An interesting note, Rivals has removed Fortson's offer from their site. I don't know if something has happened and the scholarship is no longer on the table or if it's simply a mistake. 

Do we have a mystery brewing? 

Happy Trails

The following prospects have given verbal commitments to other schools. Once again, these all appear to be solid verbals. While Carpenter and Rotheram were fringe prospects, KU has been chasing after Ariguzo and Rogers for months.  They would have made good additions to the Jayhawk line-up.

  • Offensive Tackle Beau Carpenter from Sulphur Springs, TX has committed to Texas Tech.
  • Guard Matt Rotheram from North Olmsted, OH has committed to Pittsburgh.
  • Inside Linebacker Chi Chi Ariguzo from Columbus, OH has committed to Northwestern.
  • Outside Linebacker Deon Rogers from Port St. Lucie, FL has committed to Georgia.