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Four-star Marcus Stripling adds to OU’s healthy D-line class

NORMAN, Okla. — The Sooners have another war daddy in their 2019 defensive line class. Houston (Texas) Mayde Creek four-star D-end Marcus Stripling committed to Oklahoma over primary suitors Alabama and Texas A&M on the first day of the Early Signing Period.

That makes him now the second addition in the last few hours to a class that already ranked in the Top 10 nationally entering the day. He’s the 21st overall commit for the Sooners in 2019.

Stripling, yet another Opening Finalist addition, ranks as the 233rd-best prospect in the country, No. 17 strong-side defensive end and No. 31 player in the Lone Star State, with a 0.9131 rating, according to the industry-generated 247 Composite. By 247Sports, he’s the nation’s No. 198 overall prospect, No. 16 strong-side defensive end and No. 25 player in the Lone Star State, with a 92 rating.

Midlands Region Recruiting Analyst Gabe Brooks likens Stripling to Breeland Speaks of the Kansas City Chiefs. So that’s an indicator of the talent level OU is getting here in him.

“Strong, explosive defensive lineman with size that could translate to multiple spots depending on scheme,” Brooks said. “Adequate height and impressive build. Passes the eyeball test. Not necessarily a long player, so frame potential could be limited. Flashes devastating short-area power at times. Closes fast relative to size and position. Explodes through target when he has a free run. Cognizant of going for the ball to create turnovers when opportunity is there. Plays with a mean streak. Has played high number of snaps in a standing edge position, but could be a ‘tweener at the next level.

“Built like a four-man end, but at 260 pounds, may develop/bulk into one-gap tackle in college. Could be a man without a true position. Needs to play with more consistency. Sometimes disengages well, but other times lacks proper use of hands. Production has been hit-and-miss. Must add more nuance to pass-rushing repertoire.

“Has tested well, but sometimes plays on the stiff side. Potential to develop into NFL draft prospect, given he finds positional home.”

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Stripling stands in at 6-foot-2.5, 260 pounds. Along with Marcus Hicks, Joseph Weté, Kori Roberson and LaRon Stokes, he makes for the fifth defensive line commitment for Ruffin McNeill and Calvin Thibodeaux. Hicks and Weté, like Stripling, are four-stars, while Roberson and Stokes as three-stars.

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