Here’s a tweet most of us didn’t expect to see today:
— Jay Norvell (@OU_CoachNorvell) July 3, 2014
The verb “acquired” in sports is usually saved for the professional ranks, but it’s what feels most appropriate in Thursday’s news of former Missouri wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham. It felt like a free agent acquisition. A star wide receiver finds a new home at a powerhouse program in need of a 6’6″ pass-catcher with 17 touchdowns in 87 career grabs.
Of course, Green-Beckham only became a former Missouri wide receiver after his April dismissal following a burglary investigation that ultimately resulted in no charges being filed.
This isn’t the first time Stoops has taken a hot button transfer, but it tells you enough about how much Bob Stoops values Green-Beckham’s talent.
Bob Stoops hasn’t taken many risky transfers. In 2001, he took DL Lynn McGruder from Tennessee (marijuana).
— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) July 3, 2014
The timing of this move should not be ignored. On the day before the Fourth of July, in the deadest of dead periods on the college football calendar, it can be assumed not many of Oklahoma’s colleagues were working today. Many writers, including myself, wondered how the Sooners were able to host a recruitable athlete during a dead period, but Green-Beckham was already a Sooner before he was spotted on the Oklahoma campus today.
13.02.5.5.2- A prospect is not subject to dead period visit limitation if signed Fin. Aid Agreement #complylikeachampion
— OU Compliance (@OUCompliance) July 3, 2014
There is always risk involved in taking a player another program has dismissed, but this is a calculated one for Stoops. For one, Green-Beckham has pledged to behave on a different level than he showed in Columbia, where his the burglary investigation was not his first run-in with local law enforcement. “OU is a great program and I feel privileged to be part of it,” he said in the university’s statement. “The university has made the expectations clear and I want to live up to them and be a positive part of the campus and team.” Second, Oklahoma is not going into this arrangement blind. The Sooners stated they have done their due diligence on DGB, and this is the same staff that recruited him heavily back when Green-Beckham was the nation’s top-rated player out of Springfield, Mo. Oklahoma was a finalist, along with Texas and Arkansas, when Green-Beckham pledged to Missouri in February 2012. That undoubtedly played a part. So, too, did his six catches for 144 yards and two touchdowns in the SEC Championship last December.
And this brings us to another bullet point of this story: the chance that Green-Beckham does not play for Oklahoma at all. This upcoming season will be his third in college football, meaning he is eligible for the 2015 NFL Draft. In theory, DGB has an equal chance of being a Minnesota Viking or a Tampa Bay Buccaneer as an Oklahoma Sooner 10 months from now.
less than 50% RT @ralphDrussoAP: What’s the chances Dorial Green-Beckham never plays a game for Oklahoma?
— Allen Kenney (@BlatantHomerism) July 3, 2014
I’m sure NFL teams would love to see DGB allow OU to pump a year’s worth of resources into him and he provide zero return for the Sooners.
— David Ubben (@davidubben) July 3, 2014
Oklahoma has stated it will appeal the NCAA for immediate eligibility under the “run-off rule” exemption, which would require help from Missouri.
Expect OU to file a waiver next week under the “run-off” criteria that would make DGB eligible for ‘14. The criteria: pic.twitter.com/rO0KByRqTh
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) July 3, 2014
There is precedent Oklahoma can point to, as just two weeks ago former LSU basketball player Anthony Hickey was approved for immediate eligibility at Oklahoma State under the same rule. The difference, though, is that Hickey left LSU purely for basketball-related reasons, not for appearing in the crime blotter of the Baton Rouge Advocate.