For Hughes, it's been Christmas for Months

Recruiting coverage at Sooner Illustrated continues as we bring fans the latest in Oklahoma recruiting news. Today, we talked with junior defensive end from Klein Oak High School in Texas.

School is no longer in session for many students as the Winter break is at hand. During this time, some families are celebrating Christmas, a time to spend with loved ones and exchange gifts with one another.

With that said, gifts can come in many ways and forms. For Klein Oak defensive end Nathan Hughes, unwrapping gifts has been going on for months now.

"This entire process is amazing. When I was playing middle school ball I looked up to the older football players," Hughes said. "I never thought it would be me. When I open these letters up and find offers, it just feels like Christmas. I never would have believed that I would be this highly recruited."

Perhaps by now the idea is somewhat becoming a reality. Hughes informed Sooners Illustrated that he is up to nine offers now. Oklahoma, Baylor, Houston, Duke, Texas A&M, Arkansas, LSU, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech have all dropped its names in the hat in hopes of landing him in 2011. 

As for visits, He caught a Texas game when the Longhorns played Louisiana-Monroe and took in the LSU/Florida game, making the road trip with teammate and LSU commit Luke Muncie.

"I went to Texas and it was a great experience and LSU was just a crazy game day atmosphere," Hughes said. "I'm not sure what other schools I will go to, but I want to talk with my mom about some places. I was supposed to go to (Texas) A&M this weekend with a teammate, but something came up and plus I'm sick with the cold."

Despite play two-thirds of the season with a broken hand, the 6-foot-6, 252-pound Hughes still led the team in tackles (86) and sacks (11). 

"You don't realize how much you use your hands on the defensive line until you are not able to use it," Hughes said. "I can't wait until next year to see what I can do with two good hands."

Even with a broken hand, the Oklahoma assistant coaches came down to Houston to check with Hughes and see what he was working with. 

"My coach knows coach Wilson in some kind of way and he came down to watch my video with my coach," Hughes said. "After one video, my coach told me that Oklahoma wanted to offer me. I was like, ‘Wow, this is big.'"

Hughes has held the Sooner offer for about one and one half months and still has a level of excitement about himself.

"I was not expecting this offer. I mean, this is big," Hughes said. "Oklahoma is such a powerhouse and always have great seasons and win. It's a great school and I look forward seeing more about it."

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