Quarterback Spencer Rattler said Monday he's transferring from Oklahoma, and six high school recruits also have decommitted from the program since head coach Lincoln Riley announced he accepted the same job at Southern California.
The announcement from Rattler -- who opened the season as the Heisman Trophy favorite and later was benched -- was not unexpected. But now, just 16 days before the early national signing period begins, Oklahoma finds itself down three commits from the 2022 class and three more from 2023.
Bowing out of their 2022 commitments are linebacker Kobie McKinzie and offensive lineman Demetrius Hunter, both from Texas, as well as defensive lineman Derrick Moore from Baltimore. The 247Sports composite ranks all three in the top 20 at their positions.
The hits are even more significant in the 2023 class for the Sooners.
Quarterback Malachi Nelson, the No. 2 quarterback and No. 2 player in the nation, decommitted and could follow Riley to USC. He's a local product from Los Alamitos, Calif., and behind only Arch Manning -- nephew of Peyton and Eli -- in the player rankings.
Also backing off the pledge to Oklahoma were a pair of Floridians -- Brandon Inniss, the No. 1 wide receiver and No. 9 player in the 2023 class, and running back Treyaun Webb, who is ranked No. 5 at his position and No. 96 overall.
"In light of the recent events and changes, my family and I believe it's best if I de-commit from OU at this time," Nelson posted to Twitter. "I want to thank all the Sooner fans for the relentless love and support they've shown."
In his statement posted to Twitter, Rattler made no specific mention of Riley, instead simply stating he'd be entering the transfer portal to pursue his academic and athletic career elsewhere.
"Sooner Nation: Thank you for allowing me to be a student-athlete at this prestigious institution," he wrote while briefly thanking teammates and coaches. "We won several games together and made memories that I will cherish forever."
"Thank you again, Oklahoma," he ended his statement. "I will miss you."
Rattler, an Arizona native, started all 11 games as a redshirt freshman in 2020 and was a first-team All-Big 12 selection. He threw for 3,031 yards, 28 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
In the Oct. 9 game against Texas, however, he was benched and never regained his starting job.
He will have three years of eligibility remaining, though he also is eligible to enter the NFL draft in 2022.
--Field Level Media