A throng of friends and classmates inched in to get a good look at Kristian Doolittle on Wednesday morning in the lower commons area at Edmond Memorial High School. Even more students peered down from the second level of the school.
He was nervous. One of his friends yelled from the crowd that he was signing his life away. Cameras snapped and Doolittle smiled. He was ready to be an Oklahoma Sooner.
“It made me kind of nervous,” Doolittle said of actually signing in front of the horde. “I kind of messed up when I was writing. It was just a really good feeling. I’m happy.”
Doolittle was the first 2016 Oklahoma commit to make his pledge official on the first day of the early signing period. Darrion Strong committed to the Sooners around noon and four-star wing Kameron McGusty followed after 2 p.m. Matt Freeman officially signed around midnight CST to create the highest-rated class under current coach Lon Kruger.
The class is currently ranked 17th in the nation.
“It feels really good knowing that,” Doolittle said. “. . . I know we have a good freshman class going in. I know we’ll all get together well. We should have a really good team next year.”
Doolittle is a 6-foot-5 3-star forward who committed to Oklahoma last December. As a junior at Edmond Memorial, he led Class 6A in rebounding and is one of the highest-ranked players in the state.
Strong, a 6-foot-2 point guard, commited to Oklahoma clad in an OU hat and sweatshirt. He was a third-team NJCAA All-American as a freshman at Coffeyville Community College, where he said the Sooners name is starting to become pretty well known.
"It feels pretty good, the fact of my story and how everything went down and me just dreaming about this moment and working hard," Strong said. "It's just starting to hit. It's still crazy to me, it's just a blessing."
Freeman, a native of New Zealand, is a three-star power forward who stands 6-foot-9 and led his team to the Secondary School National championship game. He’ll play in the post at Oklahoma but has elite wing skills for a big man.
McGusty is the highest-rated player to sign with Oklahoma since 2006. The four-star scoring guard is rated as the 33rd-best player in the country. He led the Under Armor Association in scoring during a breakout summer in 2015.
“This is our chance to take over the Big 12,” McGusty said.