Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Q&A: Coach of 2014 DE Deondre Clark
By Bob Przybylo
Oklahoma City Douglass coach Willis Alexander knew defensive end Deondre Clark was going to receive a lot of college attention.
He just never had an idea of how much. Never had an idea that schools like LSU, Texas and USC would be coming to town.
But that’s the case as Clark, who is in the Watch List, has become one of the top in-state names and one of the top national defensive ends in the country.
His junior numbers back up that claim with 99 tackles and 22 sacks. Bigger and stronger than most of the opposition, Clark dominated and played like he was bigger and stronger than everybody else.
Defensive end Deondre Clark has offers from Oklahoma, LSU, Oklahoma State and USC, among others.
With offers from Oklahoma, Texas, USC, LSU, Notre Dame, among several others, he’s not slowing down yet.
SoonerNation: Where did Deondre make the biggest strides during this last season?
Willis Alexander: He got a lot stronger. And with his strength, came his explosiveness. He wanted to be a better player this season after going through some growing pains as a sophomore. He did that. He did everything the right way.
SN: You guys are accustomed to have one or two kids receive some interest but nothing like Deondre. How is he handling things?
Alexander: He’s handling it. I can tell sometimes it can be a real burden. It’s a lot for a 17-, 18-year-old kid to put on his plate.
SN: Does he have any favorites?
Alexander: We’ve talked about that. He does, but I would rather he say who they are.
SN: OK, how about were there any offers that got him a little more excited than the rest of the bunch?
Alexander: Yeah. LSU and USC definitely meant a lot to him.
SN: What’s his mindset right now on recruiting? Is he looking to get this over and done? Looking to drag it out?
Alexander: He’s waiting on a few more schools and then it’s going to depend on how the schools are with him. I don’t want him to drag it out and then miss out on an opportunity. It’s tough when you’re asked to weigh the pros and cons so early and expected to give such an early decision. The biggest thing on his mind might be what’s he going to wear to prom, but he has coaches looking for a decision right now.
SN: Where can Deondre get better heading into his senior season?
Alexander: He can get stronger. There’s always room for improvement. One thing that can happen because he’s so much bigger and stronger is when he goes against smaller guys, he just goes through the motions. We’ve been telling him to challenge himself at all times. When he’s challenged, it brings out the best in him every time.
SN: With his brother Stevie signing to play basketball at Oklahoma State, do you think he learned a lot about the recruiting process because of his brother?
Alexander: I do. He got to see a lot of things he had never seen before, and I think it will help him a lot moving forward. We try to educate our kids early on about the recruiting process, that’s one thing we definitely stress here. We want them to be ready.