OU football: Sooners target Caleb Williams attempts to follow in Spencer Rattler's footsteps ahead of July 4 decision

Kyle Phillips / The Transcript

OU head coach Lincoln Riley reads a play sheet during the Sooners' game against Baylor in the Big 12 Championship last Dec. 7 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Riley looks to land the top-rated quarterback in the 2021 class on Saturday with Caleb Williams picking between the Oklahoma, LSU and Maryland.

A colossal week has arrived for Caleb Williams.

For those unfamiliar, Williams is the 6-foot-1, dual-threat quarterback nearly every major program wanted in the 2021 class. The Rivals.com's top-ranked quarterback has narrowed his list, however, and will choose between a final three of Oklahoma, LSU and Maryland on Saturday.

The five-star prospect announced his college commitment will go public July 4 but first, he heads to Nashville, Tennessee.

Williams is a finalist for the Elite 11, one of the country's top high school quarterback competitions. The event started in 1999 boasts alumni such as Super Bowl champions Drew Brees, Ben Roethlisberger and Aaron Rodgers. Aside from competition, it allows for high school seniors to learn from current college quarterbacks, who serve as counselors — OU's 2019 starter Jalen Hurts was one last year.

Despite Williams' blue-chip rating, the signal-caller is looking to prove something this week.

“I've been going through the script for the Elite 11, working on a bunch of throws, working on live routes and things like that with the wide receivers, just to make sure I'm ready for this moment,” wrote Williams in a blog post to SI.com. “I'm going out there to make sure everybody knows — and they can get their own idea — of me. Where I am, what they think of me. But I'm going there to compete and learn from the coaches.”

Williams will compete against the likes of Ohio State verbal Kyle McCord, Southern California commitment Miller Moss and LSU pledge Garrett Nussmeier. One-time Sooner commit Brock Vandagriff, who flipped to Georgia, will also compete in the event.

Beating those prospects for the Elite 11 Most Valuable Player award would be a solid prize for Williams ahead of making his future plans known. It certainly would be a major positive for coach Lincoln Riley’s program as well.

If Williams wins the camp’s MVP honor and picks OU — which both Rivals.com and 247Sports.com predict to happen Saturday — he’ll give the Sooners two of the last three Elite 11 most valuable players. Redshirt freshman Spencer Rattler earned the accolade in 2018, giving OU at minimum one season with Rattler and Williams sharing Riley’s quarterback room.

Williams hails from Washington, D.C., where he enters his final season at Gonzaga High School. And while he made little mention of his forthcoming announcement in his latest post, the Sooner target has been as thoughtful and open with his recruitment as any prospect with his weekly blogs to SI.com.

He spent much of his Monday post thanking family, friends, teammates, coaches, trainers and mentors for their involvement in his journey.

Where his journey takes him past high school still remains a mystery for a few more days.

Until then, the Sooners’ quickly rising recruiting class waits.

Joe Buettner


Follow me @ByJoeBuettner


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