On the eve of the opening game for the 2016 season, a first took place for the Oklahoma State Cowboys as Friday afternoon on the 2 p.m. arriving flight from DFW International Airport to Stillwater Regional Airport was the first Cowboys football recruit to arrive in Stillwater for his official visit on the new American Eagle regional jet service.
Cedar Grove (Ga.) High School quarterback Jelani Woods, who committed to OSU this spring when he made an unofficial visit with his entire family, stepped down the stairs and accompanied with his parents was picked up by Oklahoma State assistant recruiting coordinator Mike Groce.
Woods will be in Stillwater until Sunday and take in the Cowboys opener with Southeastern Louisiana as part of his official visit.
Woods had a break in the schedule as Cedar Grove is 1-1 after defeating Stone Mountain (Stephenson), Ga. in week one 34-23 and then last week after Woods hit a freshman teammate for a 38-yard touchdown pass and scored himself on a quarterback run, Southwest DeKalb came back to win a 21-20 barn burner in week two. This week Cedar Grove has a bye and won't play again until Friday, Sept. 9, when they take on Columbia High School from Decatur, Ga.
Also, it was learned earlier this week that freshman walk-on linebacker Cade Smith, who had to have heart surgery this summer, is going to give up football. The Pleasanton, Texas product posted on Twitter that after meeting with doctors he had decided the best course of action was to give up football.
He is the second Oklahoma State player to recently give up the game because of heart issues. Oklahoma State Sports Medicine has been doing a very aggressive review of the Cowboys roster of student-athletes and checking particularly on athletes that had previous heart issues at any stage of their lives.
Sometimes the school is aware on these and sometime not, as medical histories are provided by the student-athlete and his family. The review came after junior college transfer Tyrek Coger in basketball went into distress and later died following a conditioning workout this past July. The autopsy revealed that Coger had an enlarged heart and that was the cause of death.
In the case of Smith, a linebacker who had been first team all-district performer as a senior, he suffers from now Wolf Parkinson's, left-bundle branch blockage, and bicuspid aortic valve disease.
Cade Smith's twin brother, Zach, is still on the Oklahoma State football squad but doesn't have the same heart issues.