It went down pretty much as we guessed in our story on the commitment of East Hamilton High School kicker and punter Jake McClure out of Tennessee. McClure came in on an extended unofficial visit with his mother and left an Oklahoma State Cowboy commitment with a date to return for an official visit in January.
"I got there Friday morning and I met with the special teams coordinator Steve Hauser, who I'd been talking to and he kind of showed me around everything and explained what they were looking for, insight into the program, and their expectations," described McClure. "I felt at home right away and the campus has a really homey feel. I like that it is in a college town and that everything you need is in walking distance."
McClure said that besides a campus tour that included the Spears School of Business since he is interested in majoring in business, they checked out the living areas and all of Stillwater.
"I got to meet most of the coaches and the players," he added. "Then coach Gundy had my mom and I in his office. He knew everything about our family and he is a family guy himself. He talked to us and it was like we'd known him awhile and then after about 10 minutes he offered me and I accepted on the spot."
McClure said he was being brought in to compete for the vacant placements (field goal and PAT) job by graduating senior Ben Grogan, but that in time he could compete for all three, placements, kickoffs, and punting.
He said he had an offer from Colorado State, East Tennessee, and Tennessee-Chatanooga. He had interest and had heard a lot from Tennessee and Virginia Tech.
This past season McClure said he was 12 of 14 on field goals with his two longest being 57 and 49 yards. The 57-yarder was the one that earned him the Tennessee Specialist of the Week in week eight of the season. He had a 46.8-yard average on punts and he had 75 percent of his kickoffs go as touchbacks.
"I grew up playing soccer, but when I was in the fifth or sixth grade my brother's best friend was a kicker so I would go and shag balls when he kicked and that's when I started kicking full-time," McClure said. "I work almost every weekend with James Wilhoit. He's a former kicker at Tennessee and he is the one that got my name to coach Hauser. Coach Hauser trusts him and I owe him a lot."
McClure stressed that he is really excited about going to Oklahoma State and can't wait to come back on his official visit. He is the Cowboys' 17th verbal commitment.