Birdow's Visit About More Than Football

There were several prospects on hand at Oklahoma State's first spring scrimmage on Wednesday. One of them, Taven Birdow of IMG Academy in Florida, had been to Stillwater several times before. Birdow is a 6-1, 205-pound running back who is the son of former OSU defensive end and linebacker Jermaine Birdow.

Taven, who had a huge breakout season at Altus High School as a sophomore with 1,796 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns, said this trip to Stillwater was more about the football.

"I've been there a couple of times, been for a game before, and I've seen all the facilities so I really wanted to be around the players and talk to the coaches," Birdow explained.

"I liked it a lot and I watched practice and had a chance to talk to the new running back coach (Marcus Arroyo). I was with Coach (Johnny) Barr, the recruiting coach, and I got to talk to Coach (Mike) Gundy for awhile."

Last season at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., he rushed 72 times for 567 yards and eight touchdowns. IMG is a school with a heavy sports influence. It started with tennis back in the day and has expanded to all sports, individual and team. Birdow says it works for him.

"I like it a lot but it is pretty intense," he said the school. "I like the competition and it makes you better. There are three solid running backs and we rotate but it is always competitive."

Tulsa has offered Birdow but many other schools are evaluating including Oklahoma State.

"I don't know when I will commit," Birdow said over the phone as he heads into the final weekend of his spring break. "It kind of depends on the offers. I'm hoping to get the offers I want.

"I know that we start spring football on April 28 and there will be lots of schools coming through and the offers should come in then."

I think they will because this young man is a very good looking running back from a physical standpoint and he can play as the tape evaluation is strong. He is also smart and is looking at an engineering major in college, he said, possibly petroleum engineering but he hasn't fully decided yet.

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