"I started talking to Tim Brewster, who coaches Mississippi State's receivers, and he gave me tips. Then last night, Coach Brewster offered."
It didn't take O'Donnell long to pull the trigger.
"I got off the phone and talked with my dad," said O'Donnell, whose father Geoff is the SouthLake head coach. "Dad got the specifics involved with the offer and I committed.
"It's crazy. Last year I was just another kid on the field. It's really good for our school with new kids continuing to come in. They see us getting scholarships and are hopeful of doing the same thing."
O'Donnell had a parting message for the MSU faithful.
"I want to thank the coaches and Bulldog Nation," he said. "Mississippi State has the best fans in the SEC."
SouthLake Christian is building a powerhouse under Coach O'Donnell, who admits to being a little rusty with the current lightning-speed pace of recruiting after years away from the game.
"It's been a learning experience for me," O'Donnell laughed. "It's been 11 years since I coached college football. It's a huge feather in our cap to have two kids committed to SEC schools.
"We had two or three Division III schools come through last year; Clemson was here today with North Carolina and Duke both stopping by recently. The players are getting recognized for their talent. We're able to tell parents that we can get their kids some looks.
"We strive to have a well-organized and well-run program. We want kids to come here in the first and second grade and stay the duration."
SouthLake finished as state runner-up in its division this year.