Every week through football season, SoonerNation writer Bob Przybylo will reveal five things he learned while out on the road watching the best in the Midlands area play football.
1. Summer camps helped put 2014 quarterback Coleman Key (Broken Arrow, Okla./Broken Arrow) on the map, but the first three games have shown that camps aren’t everything. Key is a work in progress, but he is not discouraged. He admitted he had a horrible performance last week against Bentonville, Ark. He threw three interceptions and was fired up to play Tulsa (Okla.) Union this week. His first pass was a touchdown pass. Key started 5 of 5 but cooled off to a 9-of-19 clip for 85 yards in a 26-21 loss. Key threw for two touchdowns and also threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown. On the next drive, however, Key led Broken Arrow down the field and rushed for a touchdown. His competitive drive shouldn't be questioned, and he started off with about as tough a three-game stretch to start a season as you can find in Oklahoma.
2. Numbers aren’t everything in regards to Tulsa (Okla.) Union defensive end Dalton Rodriguez. He didn’t make the eye-popping plays he made against Jenks (Okla.) two weeks ago, but he was still very effective. The OU commit has become the leader of the Tulsa Union defense and is taking that role seriously. Rodriguez has also gone from uniform No. 77 to No. 34 because Tulsa Union has added some wrinkles with Rodriguez in special teams. Haven’t seen those wrinkles in the two games he has worn No. 34, but it will be something to watch moving forward. Rodriguez said he talked to OU coaches Bob Stoops and Bruce Kittle after each of his first two games and everything is solid between himself and the Sooners.
3. Broken Arrow might be feeling the weight of expectations right now. Broken Arrow coach Steve Spavital mentioned last week that he believes he had a better team in 2011 with less expectations. Now in 2012 he is not sure what type of team he has, but it has even more expectations. Through three games, Broken Arrow is not playing state-championship football. But there is a long way to go and a lot of positive signs even if things aren’t clicking on all cylinders. Spavital said he expects star junior running back Devon Thomas to return next week. Thomas has been suspended for unspecified reasons and has not played this season. He has offers from OU and Oklahoma State, among several others.
4. If Mike Stoops wasn’t doing such a quality job of keeping OU in the running for top defensive backs, I would be beating the drum for the Sooners to take a look at Broken Arrow’s Cre Moore. In back-to-back weeks, Moore has shown why he is arguably the best pure defensive back in the state. His coverage skills were top notch against Bentonville last week. Tulsa Union opted to not test him too much, but Moore showed he is no slouch as a tackler. Moore made several key open-field stops. At 5-foot-11 and 168 pounds, Moore has quality offers but might even see more as senior film gets out there.
5. The ultimate project is Jeffery Mead, a 2014 wide receiver prospect for Tulsa Union. At 6-7, schools certainly love his height. But his 168-pound frame is a cause for concern. A quarterback by trade, Mead was moved to receiver last season although he didn’t see much playing time. He showed out Friday with a 66-yard touchdown reception and six catches for 123 yards. He is the reason the word potential is thrown around in recruiting circles. The potential is scary. He has shown a strong work ethic so far. If he keeps it up, big things are going to happen.