Home sweet home. Lancaster (Texas) High defensive back Jordon Austin was finally back at OU this last weekend for the spring game and finally felt like he deserved to be there again.
Austin, a three-star prospect committed to OU since last summer, hadn’t been in Norman since Bedlam back in December. After tearing his ACL in October, Austin said he had a hard time going to OU because he felt like he was cheating because he wasn’t the player who earned the offer.
Now six months later, and Austin is more than on the road back. He’s there, and he’s home again with the Sooners.
“It was really exciting,” Austin said. “I went this week, and it felt so great to be back.”
Austin distanced himself from everybody after tearing his ACL. The mental recovery was even tougher than the physical one. Included in that was defensive backs coach Kerry Cooks.
He was ready to talk with Cooks again, and he liked what he heard.
“He acted like he knew I would be 100 percent again,” Austin said.
Austin is a 2018 commit who absolutely has built a bond with #SoonerSquad17. Austin said he spent most of the weekend with signees Robert Barnes and Charleston Rambo. He said he loves the connections he’s built with them but understands he should probably start talking with #ST2K18 recruits, too.
And probably start talking with Cooks and the rest of the coaches, too.
“It had been a minute since I’d shown my face in Norman,” Austin said. “It had been a minute since I’d seen the coaches. You can’t go missing in a relationship like that.”
Austin feared the worst after tearing the ACL. He thought for sure the Sooners were going to drop him and not honor his commitment. He was preparing himself for that, but OU hasn’t and he understands the Sooners have his best interests at heart.
His best interests at this point don’t include football. Austin is cleared to resume playing the game he loves, but he’s talked with his father, his coaches and his doctor and decided to shut it down.
Austin’s logic is what if he goes through spring and cuts wrong or injures it again. He sets himself back. Instead, he believes he’s in the perfect position right now and won’t do anything to jeopardize his health until fall camp begins.
You could argue Austin should ease himself back into things. Go little-by-little until he goes full speed, but then you just don’t know Austin.
“If you know me, I go zero or 100,” Austin said. “There is no in-between.”
Austin said he was doing a ladder drill. At first, slow to make sure he did it accurately. Then that natural competitive fire came back. He felt he could do it full speed. It’s all he knows.
“I have my mindset,” Austin said. “I’m truly shutting it down until fall camp. This is what I have to do.”