Four-star running back Taylor Tatum committed to Oklahoma on Friday, he announced on social media. The Longview, Texas, native is the No. 1 ranked running back and the No. 42 overall prospect in the 2024 class, according to 247Sports, and committed to the Sooners over USC and Alabama.
Tatum is the highest-ranked commit that Brent Venables and his staff have landed this cycle. Other notable commitments from Oklahoma’s 2024 class include four-star TE Davon Mitchell, four-star WR Zion Kearney and four-star safety Jaydan Hardy. The Sooners finished the 2023 recruiting cycle with the No. 6 overall class in the country behind Alabama, Georgia, Texas, Ohio State and LSU.
The two-sport athlete chose Oklahoma plans to play both baseball and football in college. He said the opportunity to compete in the SEC in both sports was a factor in his decision.
“The SEC is the big dog in both baseball and football,” Tatum said at his commitment ceremony. “When I was growing up and seeing LSU, Alabama and Georgia (I was thinking) I want to be a part of those big dogs. Getting a chance to play baseball and football in the SEC is an opportunity I am not going to be able to deny.”
247Sports national scouting analyst Gabe Brooks wrote this scouting report of Tatum:
Top-tier running back prospect in the 2024 class with classic running back build. Previously on the leaner end of the spectrum, has bulked up gradually during high school career to enter senior season north of 200 pounds. Broad-shouldered and assembled well. Instinctive lane-finder. Plays with patience. Presses blocks to allow for holes to materialize. Also knows how to buy a couple more strides of time on perimeter runs to help blockers re-route defenders. Quick-footed in the hole. Regularly makes something out of nothing when penetration disrupts play in the backfield. Uses an effective hesitation to set up evasive measures in space. Plenty functionally athletic to bounce runs, but plays with good discernment for a young back and keeps plays inside as needed. Flashes high-kneed, open-field speed to hit the big play. Run-finishing ability plays above listed size.
Tatum took official visits last month to Michigan, Oklahoma and USC. The Sooners jumped six spots in the 2024 247Sports team rankings to the 16th-ranked class in the cycle. That would place Oklahoma at No. 7 in the SEC team rankings behind Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Texas A&M, Tennessee and LSU. The Sooners begin SEC play in 2024.