This wasn’t how Oklahoma wide receiver commit Jordan Smallwood (Jenks, Okla./Jenks) expected the first few weeks of his senior season to go.
Smallwood suffered a separated shoulder against Tulsa (Okla.) Union in the first game of the season and missed the next two games. Worse than that, all Smallwood could do is watch as Jenks got off to an uncharacteristic 1-2 start.
No worries, though, said Smallwood. He returned and so did Jenks with a school-record 82-7 victory against Tulsa (Okla.) Edison on Thursday night.
“It felt so good to be back out there,” Smallwood said. “When I was out, I learned how to be a leader even more. I had to step up my leadership game.”
Smallwood said he felt like himself again. He had four catches for 79 yards, including his first two touchdowns of the season.
“That felt great. I finally got back to the end zone,” Smallwood said. “I didn’t think it would take the fourth game, but that’s OK. It’s not about how you start the season. It’s about you finish.”
Smallwood and teammate Steven Parker were among the numerous visitors for OU’s battle with Kansas State on Saturday. Smallwood said his relationship with OU receivers coach Jay Norvell is better than ever.
“We spoke a couple of days ago. Everything is going great. No worries,” Smallwood said.
Here’s how the rest of OU commits fared in this weekend’s Recruiting Rewind:
Austin Bennett (Manvel, Texas/Manvel, WR): Bye week.
Matt Beyer (San Antonio/Reagan, OT): His second game acting as a coach turned out better as SA Reagan pulled out a 41-37 victory at Laredo (Texas) United. Beyer has been forced to give up football because of a neck injury.
Hatari Byrd (Fresno, Calif./Central East, S): The defense continued its dominance in a 40-21 victory against Tulare (Calif.) Union.
“Hatari is doing very well this season,” Fresno Central East defensive backs coach Tony Perry said. “We have a lot of talent so the numbers don’t always stand out, but he’s doing his job.”
Matt Dimon (Katy, Texas/Katy, DE): Bye week.
Keith Ford (Cypress, Texas/Ranch, RB): It was a huge night for Ford as Cypress Ranch earned its first victory of the season with a 50-35 win against Houston Jersey Village on Saturday night. Coming off a three-touchdown outing, Ford topped it by rushing for 157 yards on 20 carries and four touchdowns.
Jordan Mastrogiovanni (Dallas/Jesuit, LB): Bye week.
Dalton Rodriguez (Tulsa, Okla./Union, OT/DE): Another rollercoaster ride for Tulsa Union. After an impressive comeback, the Redskins lost 38-35 to Owasso, Okla., on a touchdown scored with 26 seconds left in the game.
Stanvon Taylor (Tulsa, Okla./East Central, ATH): Another quiet offensive night for Taylor, who continue to recover from a groin injury. However, Taylor continued his solid play at cornerback in a 33-12 victory against Tulsa (Okla.) Central. Tulsa East Central is 4-0.
“I’m not the only good player on our team,” Taylor said. “This is about the team, and we’re making a lot of strides.”
Ahmad Thomas (Miami/Central, S): Bye week.
Cody Thomas (Colleyville, Texas/Heritage/ QB): Bye week.
D.J. Ward (Moore, Okla./Southmoore): Ward is still not allowed to play, pending an appeal to the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association.
Looking to the future
With so many commits on bye weeks, here is a look at few standout performances by some potential OU targets for 2014.
Lawrence Evitt (Wagoner, Okla./Wagoner, RB): Remember this name. Evitt’s highlight reel from the first three games is among the best you’ll find in the state. His first district game might have been a coming out party. Evitt rushed for 241 yards on 16 carries with three touchdowns in a 43-7 victory against Catoosa, Okla. He also had an interception on defense.
Justice Hansen (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe, QB): Before Hansen left for Florida State for the weekend, Hansen accounted for seven touchdowns in a 53-37 victory against Moore (Okla.) Southmoore. Hansen threw for 272 yards and five touchdowns and rushed for another 103 yards and two scores.
“He’s a lot more mobile than people think, and he keeps proving it with every week,” Edmond Santa Fe coach Lance Manning said.
Michiah Quick (Fresno, Calif./Central East, ATH): It was only 7-7 at halftime in the 40-21 win against Tulare Union. And then Quick took over. He had 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. Added a 54-yard punt return for a score and capped with a receiving touchdown.
“I can’t say enough good things about Michiah,” Perry said. “I’m telling you he is among the five best players in the 2014 class. I truly believe that.”