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Thursday, February 14, 2013
Shipp's departure shocks 2014 DT offer

By Brandon Chatmon

Just over a week ago, Jackie Shipp was making a strong impression on Zaycoven Henderson (Longview, Texas/Longview) during Oklahoma's junior day on Feb. 2. The Sooners' former defensive tackles coach had laid a foundation of trust with Henderson, one of three defensive tackles with OU offers in the Class of 2014.

Now, all that groundwork is gone after OU announced Shipp won't return as defensive tackles coach in 2013.

"I was on Twitter and they were like, 'I can't believe Coach Shipp is gone,' " Henderson said of how he heard the news on Tuesday. "So I called him and he was like, 'Yeah I got released today.' I was like 'What? I was just at Oklahoma, what happened?' He didn't really want to talk about it and I understand that. [But] I was like, 'What did he do wrong?'"

Losing Shipp definitely hurts the Sooners chances with Henderson but it's not a devastating blow.

"They were real high but it didn't hurt them too bad because I like Oklahoma anyway," Henderson said. "But it would have been nice to have Coach Shipp as a coach because he was so cool and straightforward."

Henderson boasts offers from OU, TCU and Baylor and is likely to see his offer list increase over the spring and summer. And as those new schools come in, Henderson might have more of an open mind than he would have if Shipp remained on OU's coaching staff.

"I don't have any bad thoughts about the Sooners," Henderson said. "I was looking forward to Coach Shipp being my coach but now he's gone it's opened up a chance for other schools. But I'm not counting Oklahoma out just yet. And probably won't. They're still in the running, for sure."