I don’t know how to break this to you, but Braylin Presley? He’s kind of a big deal.
The standout from Bixby — and younger brother of OSU soon-to-be-star Brennan Presley — made his commitment to Oklahoma State on Wednesday, giving the Pokes a dynamic, explosive playmaker who, like his older brother, is a bundle of electricity packed into a diminutive frame.
That’s the TL;DR version of who Presley is. I tried to dive into some comps below to give you a feel for the longer version — to give you a better idea of just how big a game-changer the younger Presley is and can be at OSU. (Video clips via Brandon Presley/YouTube)
Shiftiness in the hole: Clyde Edwards-Helaire
The former LSU running back was drafted in the first round by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2020. Edwards-Helaire was a do-it-all back out of LSU whose combination of shiftiness, speed, vision and great hands made him a no-brainer NFL talent. But his shiftiness in the hole is what most reminds me of the new Cowboy.
The low center of gravity is similar, too: Presley and CEH are both listed at 5-foot-7.
After the catch ability: Rondale Moore
Comparisons are imperfect and flawed, and even individual skill comps have their own holes. But Rondale Moore is the closest true comp I can muster to Braylin because of what he can do with the ball in his hands. He’s a big-play-in-waiting each time he gets the ball. Moore, a Purdue standout and likely draft pick later this month, made his bones with ability to make plays after the catch in college. That’s how Bixby used Braylin — and how I envision OSU using him, too. Watch this clip and tell me OSU is going to have Braylin at the ready and decide nah, you know what, let’s run it up the gut one more time. What he can do in the open field is a clinic.
Versatility: Percy Harvin
As a sophomore at Florida, Percy Harvin accrued 1,622 yards from scrimmage with a balanced bludgeoning on the ground and through the air: 764 yards rushing and 858 yards receiving. Braylin Presley’s stat line last season as a junior? 1,744 yards rushing, 727 yards receiving, 35 (!) total touchdowns.
Presley did this damage against competition big and small, too. One of his most complete outings came in Week 10 when he torched Booker T. Washington for five touchdowns that included 201 yards rushing and 155 yards receiving on a game broadcast by ESPN.
How OSU might use him
OSU — to its credit — doesn’t box its recruits in while recruiting them. Sometimes high school running backs become safeties at OSU. Other times high school safeties become running backs. But I expect OSU, knowing what Braylin can do with the ball in his hands, will formulate some way to fit the ball in his hands where he’s done that best. My best guess is a Percy Harvin/Jaylen Waddle role, where they will use his after-the-catch skills as a receiver but also not neglect what he can do when you just hand him the rock and tell him to roll. Increasingly, teams are shifting to position-less playmakers on offense, and Presley’s dynamism in open field makes him a prime candidate to be one of OSU’s very rare players to fit that mold.
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