Lackawanna (PA.) CC OLB Emmanuel Beal (6-2, 220, NR)
The story: Beal committed to Oklahoma shortly after teammate Kapri Doucet and the Oklahoma “Looney Tunes” were born. After the Sooners offered Beal, the two-star prospect caught interest from TCU, California and Penn State. Beal presents depth at the WILL linebacker position and comes in with a loaded recruiting class at the position.
JH: When you first got the offer from Oklahoma, did you think you’d sign with them?
EB: It’s a big respect thing from a big school. It was the first big school that offered me. It means they were really interested in me. I just went as it is. It was a respect thing. That was the only big school that offered me at the time. It was bigger than Arizona or New Mexico.
Is that what kind of made OU the place for you?
They needed me. I figured I could play in the conference. I could do really well in he conference. It would be a perfect slide in for me.
What was your favorite part of the recruiting process?
Getting done with it, actually.
So it was stressful?
From the beginning to the end, it was a stressful. You didn’t know where you were going to school, being in JuCo for two years and wondering which school was coming.
Is coming to Oklahoma a long road for you?
It’s just the beginning. That’s it. It’s my turn to do what I needed to do from the beginning. It’s just the beginning.
Do you want to stay with Ashton or Kapri?
If I could get both of them, that would be really cool. I know that having Ashton and Kapri being there would be comfortable, so I’m not with all new people.
Is it cool for you that all four of you are coming together?
Actually, it was surprising. We went against each other every day in practice. We went against Ashton every day in practice. It was almost like, ‘If he’s going here, why can’t we go here.’ He had all these big offers, and we wondered where our offers were. When we had the chance, we took it.
Are you guys sticking with the ‘Looney Tunes?’
We are definitely sticking with that one. I think it will blow up even more when we get there. We’ll definitely stick with it.
Where does that come from?
I don’t know. One of the coaches made it up, and ever since then, it stuck. We’re the two outside linebackers, and they blitzed us. It was either me or him making a play. They came up with it and we stuck with it.
What jersey number did you get?
They assigned me 14.
What was the toughest part of the recruiting process for you?
Going home and working out and not knowing what I’m working for. It was like I was just working. I didn’t know the purpose. Why am I out here working? I felt like it wasn’t paying off. I felt like this was starting to be for nothing.
Obviously, it turned out. What are you looking forward to most next year?
Getting bigger, getting faster, the noise level in the stadium and basically winning. I watch all my friends on TV the two years I was in junior college. Now, they get to watch me.
What’s your major?
I picked sports management.
Which assistant had the biggest impact on you coming to Oklahoma?
Definitely, coach Kish – without a doubt. He came out and visited me and came to my house. We bonded with my mom. He checked in often.
Outside of football, what are you most excited about in regards to OU?
It’s away from home. I get to find out how I’ll be on my own as I get older. That’s exciting to me, how that goes.
If you didn’t wind up at Oklahoma, where would you be?
If I didn’t go to OU, I would definitely have gone to New Mexico. When I took my visit there, the defense is like the same as Lackawanna. I would have played the same position. Everything would have fit perfectly.