Central Oklahoma struck it big on the high school recruiting trail Wednesday, with the Bronchos signing 25 Oklahoma and Texas prep stars to national letters of intent.
UCO concentrated heavily on linemen, adding six on offense and five on defense while also bringing in five defensive backs.
The Bronchos signed 20 state players and five from Texas, gaining two from Class 6A state champion Jenks (DB Braden Calip and All-State OL Brandon Waggoner) and one from Class 3A winner Blanchard (All-State WR Zach Hill).
Second-year head coach Nick Bobeck was thrilled with UCO’s success.
“We went into this recruiting season knowing that we needed to improve the overall size and physicality of our football team but didn’t want to sacrifice mobility and athleticism to do so,” Bobeck said. “I feel very confident that we were able to do that at every position.
“Our staff worked very hard to find young men that fit into the culture we are creating here at UCO. We targeted kids that want to be at UCO and want to earn a degree, not just play football. We’re very excited about this class and the future of our great program.
“Each of the young men we signed have great potential but that will only take them so far. Their determination, mindset and demeanor will determine how good they will actually be in the end. I am very proud that these young men are now Bronchos. We will continue to add a few more pieces as we progress through the spring and summer just as we did last year. The future is bright for UCO football.”
Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown (High School)
Braden Calip DB 5-9 184 Jenks (Jenks)
Dylan Cantrell LB 6-4 195 Wagoner (Wagoner)
Hunter Chalfant OL 6-5 280 Hinton (Hinton)
La’teze Clayton DE 6-1 210 Wagoner (Wagoner)
Omari Cole DB 5-11 180 Coppell, TX (Coppell)
Josh Crockett WR 6-4 180 Bristow (Bristow)
Jacob Gandara RB 5-10 185 Fort Gibson (Fort Gibson)
Zach Hill WR 6-4 205 Blanchard (Blanchard)
Leighton Light OL 6-2 290 Coppell, TX (Coppell)
Mvhayv Locust OL 6-8 260 Tahlequah (Sequoyah)
Clay Mckenzie DB 6-0 190 Gainesville, TX (Callisburg)
Dedrien Nowden Ath 5-11 167 Davis (Davis)
Sam Noble OL 6-5 285 Oologah (Oologah)
Dillon Rice DL 6-3 295 Muskogee (Muskogee)
Brooks Robertson QB 6-2 195 Roland (Roland)
Kooper Ruminer HB 6-3 215 Edmond (Deer Creek)
B.J. Scott DL 6-2 260 Lawton (Lawton)
Cade Shearwood DB 6-1 190 Stigler (Stigler)
Colton Shearwood Ath 5-10 175 Stigler (Stigler)
Thurman Smith DL 6-2 290 Tulsa (McLain)
Chas Stallard QB 6-2 200 Cleveland (Cleveland)
Brandon Waggoner OL 6-1 280 Jenks (Jenks)
Dylan Ward DB 5-10 170 Flower Mound, TX (Marcus)
Aaron Williams OL 6-3 285 Lawton (Eisenhower)
Dominique Wyatt DL 6-2 270 Rowlett, TX (Rowlett)
Here’s a brief look at UCO’s signees along with a comment from Coach Bobeck:
Braden Calip • 5-9 • 184 • Defensive Back • Jenks
Class 6A All-Star selection and an All-District pick after helping lead Jenks High School to the state championship . . . Had one of his three interceptions on the season in the state title game . . . Three-year starter for the powerful Trojans . . . Father (Brad) was a college star at East Central and is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame . . . Also a state track qualifier in the 100- and 200-meter dashes.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Braden is another kid that is extremely versatile. He will play cornerback for us but also played extensively at running back for Jenks. Braden is a kid with a huge upside and is a great addition to our program.”
Dylan Cantrell • 6-4 • 195 • Linebacker • Wagoner
Helped lead Wagoner High School to the Class 4A state championship as a junior . . . Also a baseball standout for the Bulldogs.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Dylan is a long, athletic outside linebacker who plays with great effort and physicality. His length and mentality will allow him to be a force both in run support and coverage.”
Hunter Chalfant • 6-5 • 280 • Offensive Line • Hinton
Coach Bobeck Says: “Hunter is a small school kid with a huge upside. He is very athletic with great feet and long arms. Once he adjusts to the speed and physicality of the college game he could be the steal of the class.”
La’teze Clayton • 6-1 • 210 • Defensive End • Wagoner
Class 4A All-Star for Wagoner High School in 2012 . . . Had a 99-yard kickoff return during his career . . . Helped the Bulldogs capture the state title as a junior . . . Also a basketball and track standout.
Coach Bobeck Says: “La’teze is a very versatile athlete who will play defensive end and outside linebacker and he even returned a few kicks for his high school team. He can really run and has a knack for making plays in the backfield.”
Omari Cole • 5-11 • 180 • Defensive Back • Coppell, TX
Coach Bobeck Says: “Omari is an extremely talented cover man with very long arms for his height. He transitions seamlessly in and out of breaks.”
Josh Crockett • 6-4 • 180 • Wide Receiver • Bristow
Caught 81 passes for 1,583 yards and 20 touchdowns as a senior at Bristow High School in earning Class 3A All-Star and All-District honors . . . Third-place state finisher in the 200-meter dash last year.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Josh is a long, athletic wide receiver who has the ability to out jump and out run defenders. With time in the weight room he will be a physically imposing athlete at wide out.”
Jacob Gandara • 5-10 • 185 • Running Back • Fort Gibson
Four-year starter at Fort Gibson High School . . . Rushed for 1,261 yards as a sophomore and then collected 2,937 all-purpose yards – including 1,882 rushing – his junior season while scoring 25 touchdowns . . . Capped his career last fall with a school-record 2,253 rushing yards, including a 411-yard game . . . Was named Verdigris Conference Player of the Year, Muskogee Phoenix Player of the Year, Vype Magazine Player of the Year and District 4A-4 Player of the Year . . . Also named to the Oklahoma Coaches Association and Tulsa World All-State team.
Coach Bobeck Says: “A really good high school football player who runs with great body lean. Jake has the ability to always have a foot in the ground and get north and south quickly.”
Zach Hill • 6-4 • 205 • Wide Receiver • Blanchard
Snared 56 passes for 958 yards and 10 touchdowns as a senior at Blanchard High School to earn District 3A-1 Co-Player of the Year and Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State recognition . . . Helped lead the Lions to the Class 3A state championship last fall . . . Also a baseball, basketball and track letterman.
Coach Bobeck Says: “A big, physical wide receiver who played all over the field for Blanchard. A special athlete that can really elevate and catch the ball with his hands. Once he catches the ball he is a handful to bring down.”
Leighton Light • 6-2 • 290 • Offensive Line • Coppell, TX
Three-year starter at center for Coppell (Texas) High School . . . Two-time All-District pick and earned honorable mention All-State honors twice . . . Also a baseball, track and wrestling letterman.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Leighton is a big, thick-bodied kid who played in one of the best 5A programs in Texas. He is a physical presence that understands how to finish on level one and level two.”
Mvhayv Locust • 6-8 • 260 • Offensive Line • Tahlequah
Prep standout at Sequoyah High School in Tahlequah . . . Also lettered in basketball and track.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Myhayv is huge! He’s a raw kid who bends extremely well for how long he is. The ceiling for this kid is extremely high.”
Clay McKenzie • 6-0 • 190 • Defensive Back • Gainesville, TX
Quarterback-defensive back at Callisburg High School . . . All-District MVP as a senior last fall after racking up nearly 2,300 total yards and accounting for 34 touchdowns . . . Also a baseball and track standout.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Clay is a rugged athlete who can really run. We expect him to be an extremely physical force in our secondary.”
Dedrien Nowden • 5-11 • 167 • Athlete • Davis
Defensive standout for Davis High School who helped lead the Wolves to a 14-1 record and a Class 2A state runner-up finish last fall . . . Had two interceptions in semifinal win.
Coach Bobeck Says: “An explosive athlete who will transition from linebacker into the secondary. One of the most physically gifted kids in this class.”
Sam Noble • 6-5 • 285 • Offensive Line • Oologah
Had 57 pancake blocks during his senior season and graded out at 87 percent by the Oologah High School coaching staff . . . Two-way starter, also recording 43 tackles with two sacks on defense to help the Mustangs reach the Class 4A state playoffs . . . Was a Tulsa World All-Metro selection last fall.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Sam is a long, athletic offensive tackle who has the ability to compete early in his career. Once he gets used to the physicality of the position we believe he will be a very productive player.”
Dillon Rice • 6-3 • 295 • Defensive Line • Muskogee
All-District pick last fall for Muskogee High School . . . Three-year starter for the Roughers
Coach Bobeck Says: “Dillon is a powerful kid who recreates the line of scrimmage and runs well enough to play sideline to sideline. He is a big get for the Bronchos.”
Brooks Robertson • 6-2 • 195 • Quarterback • Roland
Led Roland High School to a nine-win season, the District 3A-8 co-championship and the school’s first playoff win since the 1970s as a senior last fall . . . Passed for 2,446 yards and 35 touchdowns with just four interceptions while adding 503 yards and seven TDs rushing in earning Fort Smith Times-Record All-Area Oklahoma Most Valuable Player honors . . . Also a star basketball player for the Rangers.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Brooks is a big, sturdy-built kid with a live arm. He’s also a kid who demonstrates great leadership as a quarterback on the football team and point guard on their basketball team.”
Kooper Ruminer • 6-3 • 215 • H-back • Edmond
Coach Bobeck Says: “Kooper is an impressive athlete who will add versatility to the Broncho offense in both the passing game and run game.”
B.J. Scott • 6-2 • 260 • Defensive Line • Lawton
Oklahoma Coaches Association and Oklahoman All-State selection as a senior at Lawton High School . . . Also named District Defensive Lineman of the Year for the Wolverines.
Coach Bobeck Says: “B.J. is a highly athletic defensive tackle who is powerful and flexible enough to create an interior pass rush. He is another big man that can really run.”
Cade Shearwood • 6-1 • 190 • Defensive Back • Stigler
Two-way star at Stigler High School . . . Had more than 3,000 yards total offense as a junior in earning Muskogee Phoenix and Fort Smith Southwest Times Offensive Player of the Year . . . Passed for 2,032 yards and rushed for 1,799 more while accounting for 40 touchdowns last fall to repeat as Southwest Times Offensive Player of Year . . . Honorable mention All-Stater by the Oklahoman and Tulsa World.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Cade is a big physical safety who played all over the field for Stigler High School. We anticipate him adding to the physicality of our defense with his athleticism and mentality.”
Colton Shearwood • 5-10 • 175 • Athlete • Stigler
Wide receiver-defensive back star for Stigler High School . . . Had 71 tackles with three interceptions along with 16 catches for 352 yards and two touchdowns as a junior . . . Caught 51 passes for 857 yards and eight TDs in 2012 along with making 47 tackles and picking off three passes on defense . . . Also a standout baseball player for the Panthers.
Coach Bobeck Says: “A multi-talented athlete who excelled on both sides of the ball for his high school team. We will play Colton at safety and expect him to use his athletic ability to be a force in the back end of our defense.”
Thurman Smith • 6-2 • 290 • Defensive Line • Tulsa McLain
Made 44 tackles with seven sacks and two forced fumbles for Tulsa McLain High School in 2012 despite missing four games to injury . . . Earned All-District honors . . . Also a basketball letterman.
Coach Bobeck Says: ““Thurman is a talented kid that has the ability to be a cog in the DL rotation for a long time. He holds a point very well on the interior defensive line.”
Chas Stallard • 6-0 • 200 • Quarterback • Cleveland
Dual threat as three-year starting quarterback at Cleveland High School, racking up more than 9,000 career yards rushing and passing . . . Passed for 6,158 yards and ran for 3,018 while totaling 112 touchdowns . . . Class 4A All-Star pick and Tulsa World All-Metro selection as a senior while also earning District 4A-3 Player of the Year honors . . . Also a three-time All-Conference performer in baseball as well as a basketball and track letterman.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Chas is an athletic quarterback with great leadership ability. He carried his team this year with his knack for avoiding the rush and making plays down field.”
Brandon Waggoner • 6-1 • 280 • Offensive Line • Jenks
Offensive line star at Class 6A power Jenks High School, starting three straight years . . . Oklahoman, Tulsa World and Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State selection as a senior after helping the Trojans capture the state championship . . . Also ran for three touchdowns from fullback slot.
Coach Bobeck Says: “Brandon is just a really good football player. He’s a kid that will play offensive line for us, but he’s athletic enough to play defensive line as well. He could even line up in the backfield on short yardage/goal-line sets.”
Dylan Ward • 5-10 • 170 • Defensive Back • Flower Mound, TX
Coach Bobeck Says: “A physical player who understands how the game is supposed to be played. Dylan is a kid that plays really hard and understands the mental aspect of the game.”
Aaron Williams • 6-3 • 285 • Offensive Line • Lawton
Coach Bobeck Says: “Aaron is a big, athletic guard who has demonstrated the ability to pull and bend at the point of attack. He is a physically impressive kid with broad shoulders and lower body structure.”
Dominique Wyatt • 6-2 • 270 • Defensive Line • Rowlett, TX
Coach Bobeck Says: “An athletic kid who can really run for his size. Dominique has the ability to recreate the line of scrimmage and athletic enough to finish with a tackle.”
Central Oklahoma struck it big on the high school recruiting trail Wednesday, with the Bronchos signing 25 Oklahoma and Texas prep stars to national letters of intent.
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Oklahoma City University clobbered St. Gregory’s 12-3 on Sunday at Jim Wade Stadium supported by three runs batted in by freshman Jared Baker out of Edmond North High School.
Ryan Wright, a junior from Fruitland, Idaho, drove in four runs while going 3-for-5 with a double and his first home run with OCU. The Stars, ranked fifth in NAIA baseball, improved to 14-3, 6-0 in the Sooner Athletic Conference.
Deer Creek boys make state; Bulldogs eliminated by Owasso
The Deer Creek Antlers made a run on Durant in the third quarter of a Class 5A area consolation championship game that thrusted Deer Creek into the state tournament for the first time since 1997.
The Antlers, 18-9, got up on the Lions by six points in the third and then held the ball, thus forcing Durant to come out of its zone en route to a 54-45 win.
Led by Conner Avants’ 26 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots, Deer Creek got some easy scores going against the Lions’ pressure in the fourth.
Antler Tyler Haddock added 16 points and five rebounds and teammate Brett Valentine contributed eight points.
UCO fights to MIAA championship; falls to Missouri Southern
A spirited postseason run came to an abrupt ending for Central Oklahoma in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Tournament finals Sunday afternoon in Kansas City, Mo.
The depth-challenged Bronchos played just six players and fatigue played a factor in the second half as Missouri Southern claimed an 84-72 victory to capture the league’s automatic berth into the NCAA Division II national tournament.
Fifth-seeded UCO, playing for the third straight day, fell to 20-10 and is doubtful to earn an at-large bid into the playoffs when the full 64-team field is announced late Sunday night. The Lions improved to 24-5.
The Bronchos led 40-39 at halftime, but missed five straight shots during a key second-half stretch when Missouri Southern stretched a 45-44 lead to double digits at 54-44 with 14:21 remaining and UCO never got closer than eight the rest of the way.
Putnam North fires back in second half
The Lady Bulldogs of Edmond Memorial kept their heart beating by downing Bartlesville 48-42 Thursday night in an area consolation contest, but the momentum came to an abrupt stop Saturday afternoon in the consolation championship at Catoosa High School. Putnam North ended Memorial’s season with a 46-31 decision.
Deer Creek loses nail-biter; Memorial boys fall to Tulsa Union
The Deer Creek Antlers were just seconds away from entering the Class 5A state tournament, but Del City’s Brett Cannon scored on a reverse layup on a back-door move with one second left to down Deer Creek 47-45 in overtime in an area championship contest at Catoosa High School.
“We’re playing really well,” Antler skipper Matt Bailey said following the nail-biter. “They got us with the last shot in overtime.”
Deer Creek will face the winner of the McAlester/Durant game Saturday at 6:30 at Sapulpa High School in the area consolation title game with a trip to the big dance on the line.
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Oklahoma Christian’s Shea Coats was honored Tuesday as the National Christian College Athletic Association’s softball pitching student-athlete of the week.
Coats, a freshman from Tuttle, was honored for her performance as the Lady Eagles won two of three games last weekend at Texas-Permian Basin. Coats threw a complete-game 1-hitter to lead Oklahoma Christian to a 3-0 win in the series opener, then threw two perfect innings in relief to earn the save as the Lady Eagles took the series finale 6-2.
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She is the first OC softball player to win a NCCAA weekly award this season.
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