Oklahoma State had a good day on national signing day, snagging 10 four-star athletes, and getting nearly all of the ones they had targeted. Coach Mike Gundy talked about his class, and his philosophy in recruiting, as the day wound down on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013.
“This class is part of the bright future that we have here at Oklahoma State,” Gundy said. “It’s a class that is basically split evenly between the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, There are members of this group that have an opportunity to contribute early based on what they’ve done in high school or junior college. Today’s been a really good day for Oklahoma State University and Oklahoma State football.”
OSU landed two top four-star receivers from Texas in Marcell Ateman and Ra’Shaad Samples. A third top receiver prospect was expected to sign with the Cowboys but chose Mississippi State at the last moment.
Oklahoma State is developing a reputation as being Wide Receiver U. On landing top receivers, Gundy said:
"We are able to recruit wide receivers from a much larger area than we do in some of the other positions. We have a number of young men that show a lot of interest in us and at some point it can work against you but for the most part it works for us.”
On Marcell Ateman and Ra’Shaad Samples:
“One of them is six-foot-four and he gives us a lot. He’s very athletic and very physical. He’s 190 pounds now so he’s going to play at 210. He’s every bit of six-four and he might be taller than that, in Marcell [Ateman]. [Ra’Shaad] Samples isn’t as tall but he’s really fast, has great side-to-side movement and he’ll be a really good outside receiver for us. His body type is a lot like Josh Stewart’s, but he brings enough to the table that he’ll play on the outside for us. Both of these guys will fit in and have an opportunity to play in the first game.”
While Gundy was happy with getting a lot of highly rated players - and a top 25 signing class - he said how an athlete is rated is not the only consideration. He looks for players who love the game and have a lot of desire to play.
"Each year we come across three or four guys who are really talented, but in our opinion they won’t be a team player, or they won’t fit Stillwater, or they won’t fit what we need here, so we pass on them,"
Gundy added that he has signed some players that were not rated all that high coming out of high school, but developed at Oklahoma State. Justin Blackmon was a two or three-star player, for instance.
Kendall Hunter and Brandon Pettigrew were other players Gundy mentioned in this category.
Gundy said that while it is important to find players that fit his system, it is also important to find players that feel the college also fits them.
"So what we do, is we try to find the right guys who fit our system so they’ll be happy here. I’ve said this for a few years, and I’m not trying to pump up my own tires, but we take a two-star and make him a three, a three and make him a four and a four and make him a five. We really believe that is what we do.”
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