Stay up to date with Oklahoma football recruiting with the latest news, notes and analysis in the daily edition of DieHards’ Wagon Wheels. In this edition, we catch up with a 2018 signee, 4-star defensive end Ron Tatum from Putnam City High School in Oklahoma City.
Ron Tatum still regrets early pledge to Texas
CHOCTAW, Okla. — Ron Tatum won’t enroll at Oklahoma for more than two months, but he’s not resting. On a typical Thursday afternoon, he makes the 40-minute drive from Putnam City High School to former Oklahoma standout J.D. Runnels’ Nutrition and Athletic Club of Choctaw for a 90-minute workout.
DieHards caught up with the 4-star defensive end and No. 101 overall player in the 2018 247Sports composite rankings to talk about his recruitment. He freely admits he’d like to have a do-over on his initial pledge to Texas on April 26, 2017.
DieHards: What’s the best advice you would give to a junior going through the recruiting process?
Tatum: I would tell him to stay patient. Choose the right school. Take all your visits. Talk to your family and decide from there.
DieHards: But Oklahoma was the only school you took an official visit to, right?
Tatum: That’s why I would say that. You need to take all your visits so you actually know what all is going on with the school and the coaches.
DieHards: The 2018 class was the last one that didn’t get to take official visits in the spring. Do you wish you could have?
Tatum: For me, it didn’t matter. I had my school chosen.
DieHards: But you committed to Texas in April before flipping to Oklahoma in June. Why the change?
Tatum: I knew I made a mistake.
DieHards: You were committed to the Longhorns for about six weeks, so is it safe to say they came in second place?
Tatum: In my mind, I wanted to go to Alabama. But it was so far away. I just couldn’t go there. I always wanted to get to OU since childhood, really. Once they offered me, it was like it was chosen in my heart. I knew that’s where I would go.
DieHards: What’s the biggest secret you kept in recruiting?
Tatum: That I wanted to go to OU the whole time.
DieHards: What’s your biggest recruiting regret?
Tatum: My biggest regret is not choosing OU the first time right off the bat. That was all over the news and in front of my classmates and stuff. I still regret that.
DieHards: You committed to Texas at a ceremony at Putnam City High School. When you switched your commitment to Oklahoma it was during
the summer. I guess there was a little less intrigue?
Tatum: I just de-committed. I guess I wish I could had a de-commitment ceremony. But I don’t think you can do that.
DieHards: Which coach was the hardest to say no to during recruiting?
Tatum: Coach Tibs (Oklahoma defensive ends coach Calvin Thibodeaux).
DieHards: You ultimately said yes to him?
Tatum: I did, but I just didn’t want to say no to him. Once, I said no to him I really regretted it.
DieHards: Thibodeaux seems to build strong relationships in recruiting. How does he do it?
Tatum: He’s cool. He’ll keep in contact with you. He’s honest with you. He’s very cool and very nice and he always tells you like it is.
DieHards: Most of the recruits I’ve talked about at Oklahoma have brought up honesty from the coaches. Was that important to you?
Tatum: You shouldn’t want to hear a bunch of lies, if a coach is just telling you you’ll come in and start automatically or this or that. I want someone who will tell me straight up that I have to work and compete for everything.
DieHards: Did you write off coaches that promised things immediately?
Tatum: I listened to it, but I really blew them off. I tried to focus on things other than the playing aspect.
DieHards: Was there a school that disappointed you in recruiting?
Tatum: I would have thought OSU [Oklahoma State] would’ve recruited me more. They just sent me letters and offered me a scholarship. They didn’t really text me or try to talk to me.
DieHards: Why do you think that was the case?
Tatum: They probably knew I was going to chose OU from the jump.
DieHards: Which school would you have given more consideration if they had gotten in on you earlier?
Tatum: Probably Alabama.
DieHards: Did Alabama extend an offer?
Tatum: They were probably the sixth or seventh school. You know what, and Georgia.
DieHards: How much negative recruiting was there?
Tatum: At times, it was annoying. People kept texting you and calling you. At the end of the day, I guess people want that or wish for that.
DieHards: Were there coaches telling you not to go to Oklahoma?
Tatum: There were some people. Texas. They told me not to go to OU and stuff. They would tell me how bad they were. I was like, you’re just saying that because you are rivals.
DieHards: Which school that you didn’t sign with had the best facilities?
Tatum: Alabama. Everything there was new. It was over the top. They had stuff other schools don’t have.
DieHards: Is it beyond what Oklahoma has with the recent renovation?
Tatum: Oklahoma caught up.
Miss a previous edition of Wagon Wheels? Get caught up here.
The post Oklahoma recruiting: DE Ron Tatum wishes he could have 1 day back appeared first on Diehards.
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