Paris High's Good picks OU over Texas
By Van Hilburn
The Paris News
February 13, 2007
Stephen Good wasn't about to go through almost a year of being swamped with more phone calls from college coaches, and being asked the same questions day-after-day.
Question — "Where ya gonna sign?"
Good — "Don't know yet."
Monday night at 6:30 p.m., at Paris High's Raymond Emmett Berry Fieldhouse, the Wildcats junior all-state offensive linemen answered that question, as he made a verbal commitment to attend the University of Oklahoma. He promptly called Sooners coach Bob Stoops and told him he was headed to Norman, Okla., after graduating in May 2008.
It was a tough call for Good, who is rated by at least two polls as being the No. 2 recruit in the nation and the top pick in Texas.
Good's final list was a short one, and not surprisingly, it ended up being another Red River Shootout between the University of Texas Longhorns and the Oklahoma Sooners.
The Sooners won this battle, after the imposing 6-foot, 5 1/2-inch, 291-pound Good made a visit two weeks ago to the Norman, Okla., campus for a Junior Day.
"I just felt like this was a place for me and I didn't think I needed to wait any longer," Good said. "When I took my last (Junior Day), I knew that was the place for me. I was kinda going back-and-forth between OU and Texas before that. Norman was just a better fit for me, and I just clicked with the coaching staff better than I did at Texas."
The verbal commitment with Oklahoma is, of course, non-binding, since players can't officially sign scholarship letters of intent until Feb. 2008. For now, call it a gentlemen's agreement, one that Good says he won't break.
"No chance I'm going to change. I'm a strong commit, and I'd like to keep my word," Good said.
Good has been a major force at tackle for the Wildcats since his freshman year, gaining first-team all-district and All-Red River Valley honors all three three years.
This year he was also a first-team all-state linemen one the Associated Press Sports Editors Class 4A team, along with being mentioned on a few others. He was also the District 11-4A Lineman of the Year this past season after allowing no sacks in 171 pass attempts. He also had 87 pancakes.
He is listed on Rivals.com first-team junior (Class 200 All-America Team, along with being named the Lone Star Recruiting's No. 1 player in Texas and being listed on the Scout.com National Top 100.
Good chose the Sooners from a list of 25 other colleges that including Texas, Texas A&M University, Notre Dame, Tennessee, Arkansas, Nebraska, Texas Tech and Alabama.
Paris High coach Travis Smith said Good committed early because he doesn't want any distractions during his senior year at Paris High.
"I think he wanted to concentrate on getting the Wildcats where they needed to go . Now he can go back to being a normal high school kid again, playing football because he loves it, and working out with his teammates," Smith said.
His parents, Kim and Tommy Good, said they hope his decision will relieve some of the pressure associated with being a top recruit.
"It's been fun and it's been a great ride, and I'm very pleased with his decision. As a mother, I see the tremendous amount of pressure that he was under. I mean we all love Texas and we could never say anything bad about Texas. But Stephen has shown me he's an individual. He went with his heart."
"I'll take part of the credit," echoed Tommy Good of his son's Sooner decision. "But Stephen's strong enough to make his own decision and he didn't give into the peer pressure. In the back of my mind, I knew what his decision was going to be."
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