Prince Avenue Christian School’s quarterback Brock Vandagriff is having a great week. Tuesday, Vandagriff was named the top overall recruit in the 2021 by Rivals.com.
Thursday, Vandagriff capped a milestone week on a high note and spread a little joy to Norman, Oklahoma when he announced he is now committed to the University of Oklahoma. He posted a video on his Twitter account making his announcement.
After trimming his list down to six schools, Auburn, Georgia, Clemson, Florida, Tennessee and Oklahoma on June 4 Vandagriff felt he was ready to make his decision public. After visiting Norman and developing a relationship with Sooners’ head coach Lincoln Riley Vandagriff was convinced that he was destined for the crimson and cream of Oklahoma.
The Sooners have only offered one quarterback in the 2021 recruiting cycle and with his mind already made up, there was no need for Vandagriff to keep his future head coach on the fence about his decision.
Despite the Sooners going all in on Vandagriff and not offering any other quarterbacks in the 2021 recruiting cycle, there wasn’t any pressure put on Vandagriff to make a decision on the part of the Sooners’ staff. Riley’s respectfulness throughout the process is one of the things that stood out to Vandagriff. Riley made his presence felt early in the process for Vandagriff when he made a visit to Athens when Vandagriff played basketball against Athens Christian School in the winter.
“Oklahoma was different because Lincoln Riley was unlike any other coach,” Vandagriff said. “He took time out of his day to take me around the school. I’m the only quarterback he’s offered so I didn’t want to make him wait whenever I felt like that was the right decision. He’s respected me; he hasn’t pushed me or pressured me or anything. Whenever I felt like Oklahoma was the right thing, I just decided to pull the trigger then.”
The Sooners have had a history of great quarterback play. Recently, the Sooners have produced back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners in Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray who both went on to become the first selection in the last two NFL Draft. Jason White won the 2003 Heisman Trophy. Former University of Alabama starting quarterback Jalen Hurts will likely be the one-year bridge for the 2019 season. The recent success at the quarterback position got the Sooners on the radar with Vandagriff, but everything else gave Oklahoma the edge over the other five schools listed in his top six.
“Oklahoma wasn’t really in my view because of the distance, but you couldn’t really overlook the back-to-back Heisman Trophies and back-to-back number one picks, that’s what got the first visit to Norman from us,” Vandagriff said. “It didn’t really factor into the final decision, but that was what made them get on the radar in the first place.”
The campus, the offense that allows quarterbacks to fling the ball all around the field in addition to being involved in the run game fits Vandagriff’s style. Vandagriff has showcased the skill set needed to fit into the Sooners’ spread offense in the coming years. Last season, Vandagriff passed for 3,190 yards and 28 touchdowns and ran for 1,001 yards and 23 touchdowns.
“They sling it over there in the Big 12 and that’s what I want to do,” Vandagriff said. “I want to throw the ball around. Throwing for 400 or 500 yards a game sounds awesome. I love throwing the ball and their offense is going to do it. With Baker (Mayfield) and Kyler (Murray), they also run, which I like to do. I’m not opposed to running. Whatever it takes to win, I’m down for.”
Vandagriff plans to enroll early at Oklahoma and join the Sooners for spring practice in 2021 following his senior football season. There won’t be any dramatic changes of heart or re-opening of his recruitment. Vandagriff is solid in his commitment and has turned his attention to being a regular high school football player for his final two years at PACS. There may be messages and calls coming his way to check on his status with the Sooners moving forward, but in all likelihood, the door is shut on the nation’s top player. Vandagriff is a Sooner and will be for the next two years before he steps on campus.
“Now I’m just going to be able to relax and not go anywhere because I’m committed and I’m going to that school,” Vandagriff said. “I felt relieved after I was committed. It felt like a burden was off my heart and I don’t have to think about anything else. The decision was made and now I can just chill in high school and live it up.”