Deondre Clark stepped out of a white stretch limousine Monday afternoon wearing a Nike sweatshirt that read “Lazy but Talented,” and walked slowly into Douglass High School.
And in what seemed like only a brief moment later, Clark was posing for photos and giving interviews on the stage of the school auditorium in a dress shirt with an LSU bow tie and hat.
Five days after National Signing Day, Douglass' highly recruited defensive end had finally made the announcement official that he had signed with LSU.
It was a dramatic end to a long five days that got off to an awkward start.
Last Wednesday, Clark was planning to have a signing ceremony, but school was canceled because of frigid temperatures in Oklahoma City. The ceremony was moved to Thursday.
Still, reports surfaced Wednesday afternoon from USA Today, then other national news outlets, that Clark had signed his letter of intent and it had been received by Tiger coaches. The Clark family denied the reports, with the goal of maintaining the suspense for the ceremony with his Douglass classmates.
But the school closed again on Thursday and Friday, leading to Monday's official announcement.
Clark had been verbally committed to LSU since last summer, but he had been considering other schools — primarily Oklahoma, but also Arizona State and Ole Miss.
“The last in-home visits with Coach (Les) Miles, all the talks, it made me confident,” Clark said of his decision to stick with LSU. “It came down to the wire, and I think I made a good decision. I know a lot of people back at home will probably be mad.
“I'm an LSU Tiger for four years now.”
His mother, Dorshell Clark, had recently made a public plea for OU fans to help convince her son to stay in-state. But ultimately, she came to terms with her son's decision to leave.
“I really thought I had a chance, but he was firm on what he believed,” she said. “Deondre felt LSU recruited him the best. We noticed the way the LSU coaches and team corralled around him and welcomed him from day one.”
Though she wasn't happy the report of his signing leaked out last week, Dorshell Clark took it in stride.
“It's nothing that we could have controlled, but I don't think it should've even been a comment, because Deondre stood firm on where he wanted to go,” she said. “LSU was his choice from the beginning.”
The 6-foot-4, 245-pound Clark was a Semper Fidelis All-American, two-time Oklahoman All-State first-team selection and two-time Little All-City Defensive Player of the Year.
He finished with 67 career sacks, including the single-season school record of 22.
“I'm ready to get focused now on the next task,” he said. “Get ready to go to school and get ready to play in the SEC, the best conference in the country to me and to a lot of other people.”