Spencer Rattler didn’t have to wait until 2019-2020 to start throwing touchdown passes to his future Oklahoma teammates.
He had the opportunity when fellow OU commits Theo Wease, Trejan Bridges and Austin Stogner joined him on Team Overdrive during The Opening’s 7-on-7 competition last June.
Which, by the way, they won.
“That was the first time we’ve ever really met, a couple of us,” Rattler said. “I met Trejan before, but it was my first time meeting Theo. It was a great time to get our chemistry together.
“They’re cool guys. They’re just like me, we’re all competitive. Pretty laid back, but I feel like we all have that ‘dog’ in us. I’d say our best memory was just playing together.”
Each player signed Wednesday with the Sooners, finalizing an impressive offensive group that could still grow before regular signing period arrives in February.
Even if it goes unchanged, OU would likely be content.
Rattler is the undisputed top-rated quarterback in the nation, a befitting piece to help follow back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners at QB.
Receivers Wease and Bridges are the No. 3 and 17 overall players, respectively, in the nation according to Rivals. Rattler won’t join the team until summer, but Wease and Bridges both plan on enrolling early to participate in spring practice.
“They’re super confident, which you’ve got to be, especially at receiver,” Rattler said of the pair. “They’re real swaggy, real confident and they’ll tell you how it is. They’re ball players. They can ball for sure.”
Wease and Bridges will have an opportunity to contribute immediately.
“I think they’ll certainly have a chance to. There’s no doubt about it,” OU coach Lincoln Riley said. “Getting some more receiving threats with the guys we lost the last few years and some of the guys we’re getting ready to lose, that was important.
“We’ve been able to produce at all those different positions so I think they’re certainly gonna have a chance. We’re gonna throw them in the fire early.”
Stogner is considered the No. 4-ranked tight end nationally by Rivals. A two-way player in high school standing at 6 foot 7, 230 pounds, he resembles a traditional tight end. Riley fell in love with his physicality, and for a position that doesn’t get recruited every year, Stogner was a key pickup.
“He has an edge and a mean streak that gets you excited about what all this kid can do for us. He’s one of the top tight ends in the country for a reason,” Riley said. “We’re very confident we got the right one.”
Then of course there’s Rattler, who was offered by Riley at age 14. Riley said he is unconcerned by the suspension that sidelined Rattler the final five games of his season at Pinnacle (Phoenix) High School last fall, and that all conversations between OU and his family have been positive.
Could Rattler be the starter next fall? He’ll have to compete with Austin Kendall, who will be a junior, and Tanner Mordecai, who will be a redshirt freshman.
“A lot goes into that,” Riley said. “I think physically, [Rattler] will be as gifted as anybody that we’ve brought in here. I’ve felt that for a long time, even when I watched him as a freshman, that he was a cut above most guys out there. So he’s got elite physical talent. And I think he’s got the mentality to come in and compete early.
“As Spencer knows, we’ve got other really good quarterbacks on this roster, and there’s gonna be competition like there’s always been. But any of these guys we’ve signed, we don’t sign or recruit many of these guys if we think they’re two or three years down the line of being capable of doing it. Now, being capable is one thing; going and doing it is another.”
As a high-profile talent, Rattler helped bring much of the class together. If there’s a face to the crop of offensive talent OU signed this week, he is it.
“It’s great to think about all these great quarterbacks that have gone through Oklahoma and won Heismans,” Rattler said. “I’m ready to get up there and make my own footsteps, and just learn from the older quarterbacks.”
OU 2019 class
QBs: 1 (Spencer Rattler)
WRs: 2 (Theo Wease; Trejan Bridges)
TEs: 1 (Austin Stogner)
RBs: 2 (Marcus Major; Rhamondre Stevenson)
OLs: 4 (EJ Ndoma-Ogar; Marcus Alexander; Stacey Wilkins; Finley Felix)