MESQUITE - Ask anyone at North Mesquite High School about Darien Williams and you're likely to be directed to the school's track, where the six-foot, 190-pound safety can often be found refining his sizzling speed and long jump technique.
"A 4.32 isn't fast enough," Williams told OUInsider.com. "I wanna lower it to at least 4.29 before I get to Norman."
Last fall, Williams recorded 49 tackles, forced a fumble, recovered a fumble and registered an interception. He also ran for 411 yards and six TDs.
During a rare break from the long jump pit earlier this week, Williams sat down for an exclusive one-on-one interview with OUInsider.com.
OUInsider.com: How does it feel to be a Sooner?
Williams: "I'm so excited man. I'm happy to get it over with. God's just blessed me so much to be part of a team that's the number one program in college football. I'm just excited to have this opportunity."
OUInsider.com: Why did you choose OU?
Williams: "The coaching staff. They remind me of home. When I visited OU, they treated me like they wanted me to go there. They sat down with me individually and kept me on top of their list all the time."
OUInsider.com: What are your thoughts on Coach Stoops?
Williams: "I love him. At first, I wasn't sure he'd be a very personal guy, but he was always there. I ate lunch and breakfast with him. We always had conversations about simple stuff like school work and girls."
OUInsider.com: How difficult was your decision?
Williams: "It wasn't bad. I looked at Texas A&M a lot, but OU kept pulling ahead and once they did, they took what they had and ran with it. They're really, really good recruiters."
OUInsider.com: How does it feel to be finished with the recruiting process?
Williams: "It was an exciting process, but it was hard sometimes. I'm just happy that I made my decision and I'm sure it's the right one."
OUInsider.com: Did you follow the Sooners during your childhood?
Williams: "I really didn't watch a lot of college football, but I then I started noticing that OU was kicking Texas' butt every single year. That helped me grow to OU's tradition. They truly are a bunch of incredible people."
OUInsider.com: What are your expectations for next season?
Williams: "The coaches have said they want me to play and I want to play badly. I'm going to go out there and play as hard as I can. I can only do what my highest limits allow and if that's not good enough, I may have to redshirt, but I'm going out there to play and not hold anything back."
OUInsider.com: What position do you expect to play?
Williams: "Cornerback or safety."
OUInsider.com: What's your biggest strength on the football field?
Williams: "Going towards the football. I honestly think I do that really well, because I'm so physical. I remember in flag football that I was the only kid tackling people. It's never been a problem for me to be physical. It doesn't scare me at all. I love it."
OUInsider.com: Where do you need improvement?
Williams: "My speed. Right now, I can run about a 4.32. I want to get that faster not only on the track, but in the football pads as well. I like to be good at everything - speed, being physical, flowing towards the ball and coverage."
OUInsider.com: What's your opinion of Norman?
Williams: "I love that town. It's all OU. I love a lot of attention. Once you go there, there's a lot of attention. OU's everywhere, itís all over the cars, houses and malls."
OUInsider.com: What about the OU fans?
Williams: "They're true to the Sooners. All I can say is 'Boomer Sooner.' They're down and I really like that. It's incredible."
OUInsider.com: Besides football, what else at OU intrigues you?
Williams:"I can't wait to meeting a whole bunch of new people, because I'll miss the people I'm used to seeing all the time. I'm a momma's boy, so I'll have to make the transition to being on my own. School work has never been a problem for me, but being out there on my own will be the hardest thing for me."
OUInsider.com: How's track going?
Williams: "It's alright. Iím working at it, because I like being good at everything. I hate to be limited, I like to be able to do everything possible."
OUInsider.com: Have you considered a major yet?
Williams: "I don't know yet, but it'll probably be business or graphic arts. I love to draw."
OUInsider.com: Darien, thanks for your time today.
Williams: "Sure, tell everybody I'm thinking about OU every single day."
Williams feels the need for more speed
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