Recruiting: Cowboys Impress McKinney

Myron McKinney made the trip to Stillwater from Oklahoma City expecting to see exactly what the oddsmakers predicted – a 36-point blowout victory by the Texas Longhorns. But the 6-foot-3, 300-pound Putnam City North lineman left Stillwater after his unofficial visit impressed with the Oklahoma State Cowboys and head coach Mike Gundy. Was McKinney impressed enough to reconsider his commitment to the Arkansas Razorbacks?

"I'm not going to lie," McKinney said Thursday evening as he was preparing for the final high school game of his career Friday night when Putnam City North faces U.S. Grant. "I came in thinking that OSU might get pushed around a little bit. I was just going up to Stillwater to enjoy the game, but I saw a spark from the Cowboys. I was really impressed with the way the team responded."

That, McKinney says, has given him something to think about this week. Did he leave Stillwater thinking differently about Mike Gundy's program than when he arrived? "Yeah, I did," he said. "I walked away with an entirely different impression of OSU. I was impressed with what I saw. With the guys who are already there and the recruiting class they're bringing in, they're going to get it turned around. I could see OSU being a really good, strong program.

"I really like what Mike Gundy is trying to do. He got rid of some bad roots by kicking some players off, and they were guys that could have helped them, but he wants to do it the right way. He wants to do it with players who are good people. I really like that. I really like where they're going to take the program."

McKinney, however, says he is still going to honor his commitment to Arkansas – at least right now. He said he will make an official visit to Fayetteville on Dec. 2-3, will return to Stillwater for his official visit on Dec. 9-10, and has scheduled a trip to Missouri on Dec. 16-17.

"Right now, I really don't see myself changing my mind," McKinney said of his verbal commitment to Arkansas. "All of the guys recruiting me know about my Christian faith and how important it is in my life. I believe that the most important thing a man has to offer is his word, and that's what I gave to Arkansas – my word. I've offered my word to Arkansas and it's going to take something really big and important to change my mind. They're the frontrunner and I see myself playing there next year.

"But I also know that things change and that's why I'm taking the other visits. When I take my visits I want to see what each school has to offer. It's going to come down to more than football."

McKinney, five days after the fact, is still impressed with what he saw from the Cowboys against the Longhorns last Saturday.

"What I saw is making me scratch my head even more," he said. "At first, the reasons to go to OSU were because I could probably play right away, I could stay close to home where it would be easy for my family to see me play, and I'd be around friends. But now when I think about OSU it's because it's also a place that's going to be a winning program, and I can still probably play right away, be close to home and be around friends. Every recruit wants two things – you want to go somewhere you can play right away and win some football games. OSU is definitely a place I could do that."

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