Friday, July 12, 2013
All in the Evans family for Sooners
By Bob Przybylo
For every recruit, there is a moment of realization when he finally figure out what school he wants to attend and play college football.
It can happen at a camp or an unofficial visit. Or if you’re Allen (Texas) High linebacker Tay Evans, it can happen when you’re young.
Evans, a three-star outside linebacker, said he knew Oklahoma was the place for him the first time he watched the Sooners play on television.
Tay Evans is the newest Oklahoma commit for 2014. His father, Bobby Evans Sr., played basketball for the Sooners.
Last week Evans’ dream of playing for OU became a reality when he committed to the Sooners on an unofficial visit.
“When I visited on junior day, I didn’t really get to see much and had to leave early,” Evans said. “This time around I was able to come back and see everything. It’s always been my dream.”
All Evans was waiting for was OU to make it come true. Evans had all but given up hope than an OU offer was coming his way. Numerous visits by the OU coaches during the spring evaluation period didn’t net an offer.
There were questions about his health as Evans was recovering from shoulder surgery. There were questions about his position. OU had him sized up at outside linebacker when he was also playing defensive end at Allen.
The uncertainty lingered for Evans, who finally reached a point of not worrying about it, saying he couldn’t control what would happen.
But after OU finished its summer camp season, Evans was among the first to be offered. The countdown was on at that point until he would commit and follow in his father’s footsteps, Bobby Evans Sr., who played basketball for the Sooners.
With Tay Evans already in the fold, it came as a bit of a shock to learn Evans was making another unofficial visit to campus Wednesday. This visit had nothing to do with him, though. It was a chance for the OU coaches to get to know Bobby Evans, Tay’s younger brother, a Class of 2015 prospect.
Bobby Evans is listed at 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds, but he said he is closer to 6-5 and 255 and is expected to grow at least another couple of inches. That might have been all the getting to know the OU coaches needed to do as Bobby Evans was offered and pledged to OU as well Wednesday.
“I didn’t have any idea that was going to happen,” Tay Evans said. “I knew the visit was going to be about my brother because the coaches wanted to get to know him better. It’s incredible.”
The crazy ride for Bobby Evans continues. He played junior varsity for most of his sophomore season before getting the call up to varsity for the playoff run.
He said he was a little nervous, but as time went on, he got much more comfortable playing tight end.
His body wouldn’t allow him to stay at the position, though. Allen High coaches had already talked about moving him to offensive tackle and that’s exactly what Bobby Evans said the Sooners are recruiting him to play.
“We’re not using tight ends at Allen this season so I was going to be a tackle anyway,” Bobby Evans said. “I was able to see the campus more and talk with Coach [Bill] Bedenbaugh.
“He said he wanted to offer me. I asked if I could commit right there so that’s exactly what I did.”
Bobby Evans has offers from Oregon State and Ole Miss and was receiving interest from Texas and Texas Tech, among several other schools. Only entering his junior season, his stock is likely to soar over the next two years.
That doesn’t matter to Bobby Evans, who said the recruiting process for him ended Wednesday with his conversation with Bedenbaugh.
“This is it,” Bobby Evans said. “Now it’s all about working hard and getting stronger. It feels pretty good to be done with things.”
Bobby Evans said the brothers have talked about playing at the same school and hoping it would be OU for a long time. Now that it has come to fruition, they can’t hide their excitement.
“It’s such a great feeling, real special to know my little brother is going to be playing with me,” Tay Evans said. “You’re right, he’s not my little brother, but he’s my big little brother. This is everything we’ve ever wanted.”
Well, maybe there is one more piece to this puzzle Tay Evans would like to add. Before OU snatched up the two Allen High commits, there was another Eagle who appeared he was destined to be a Sooner before either Evans brother.
Three-star linebacker Christian Sam has been at the top of OU’s board since the winter. With several other offers to consider, it’s not a slam dunk. Texas Tech, Baylor and Ole Miss are all in the mix, too.
“I’ve been talking to him a lot,” Tay Evans said. “I know he has to do his own thing, but I would love to have him at OU, too.”