Stillwater senior receiver and safety Brandon Prather’s recruiting is off to a slow start.
He sure turned some heads Friday night in Norman’s Top of the World scrimmage with one big play after another.
“That’s what they expect out of me,” said Prather, who only has an official scholarship offer from Central Oklahoma. “Trying to play through me will be a key thing this year.
“I think we did a lot better than last week at Bixby. We’re improving and coming along nicely.”
In the Pioneers’ half game against Norman, Prather had a 9-yard touchdown reception off a deflection and later a tremendous diving catch in the game that ended in a 7-all tie.
“He’s a player,” Stillwater coach Tucker Barnard said. “He’s an absolute player. Somebody needs to snatch him up quick because whoever gets him it’s going to be an absolute steal.”
Stillwater was playing without seven starters due to injuries. Two of them — Brooks Zimmerman and Kaden Secrest — are out for the season.
Barnard was still impressed with what he saw, especially from quarterback Braxton Noble and Jordan Brown.
SHAWNEE STRUGGLES ON BOTH SIDES
Shawnee coach Billy Brown was hoping to see better execution from his team.
“We made a lot of mistakes,” he said after falling to Deer Creek 14-7 in a half game. “We’ve got to fix them. We don’t prepare for people we’re scrimmaging, but you’ve got to play better than that. A lot of room for improvement.”
Quarterback John Jacobs scored the Wolves’ lone touchdown on a 1-yard keeper, but was flagged for his celebration. He later had his team in striking distance to tie the game, but was sacked out of bounds with 18.4 seconds remaining to turn the ball over on downs.
Still, there were moments the East Carolina commitment’s passes were accurate, especially to receiver Cole Humphreys.
“We wanted to come out here and throw the ball and pass protect and play good defense,” Brown said. “We did a couple of those things, but not all of them for sure.”
CARL ALBERT FACING DEPTH ISSUES
Carl Albert and Noble played just one quarter in its half game, choosing to end the night before 10.
But it was the depth and conditioning that concerned Carl Albert coach Gary Rose more than the time.
“We’re not in very good shape,” he said. “We’ve got too many guys going both ways. We’ve got to get in shape and get some younger guys to come on and give us some backup help and rest. We’ve got some kids that can play; we’re just not deep enough. The potential is there. I’m excited about the potential.”
The Titans played eight players on both sides of the ball.
Senior Dillon Lohr scored on a short TD run for a 7-0 win and had a solid night.
“He’s got so much talent,” Rose said. “We’ve got to get the ball in his hands, but we’ve got to get him in shape, got to keep him healthy.”
DEER CREEK DEEP AT RUNNING BACK
As the quarterback battle wages on for Deer Creek between Clayton Sims and Julian Hoskins, the running back position has shown some depth with four players.
“We’ve got so many good ones, whether it was Juan Hill, Tahj Davis, Tony Rayburn or Kiwanis Roberts,” Deer Creek coach Grant Gower said. “All of those guys bring great things. If you put them all in one, they’re really good. That’s why we kept rotating them.”
Hill had a big TD on a fourth-down run from the 1 before Sims put the Antlers up for good with a 55-yard TD pass to Noah McGraw.
Gower did not name a starter for next week following the scrimmage.
NORMAN FOLEY IMPRESSES
Norman coach Greg Nation walked away from the scrimmage impressed with junior Sayvon Foley, calling him a big threat wherever he plays.
“Foley is a kid that made some things happen for us,” Nation said. “He’s just a playmaker for us.”
Norman had some big plays and turnovers, but penalties negated a fumble return for a touchdown and the Tigers also missed a field goal.
“We can’t make mental mistakes, Nation said. “We’re not good enough to make mistakes. When we make a big play, we’ve got to find a way to get it in the end zone and not make mistakes.”
NOBLE MOVING IN RIGHT DIRECTION
There were no game-breaking plays for Noble during the scrimmage, but that’s OK with new coach Greg George.
“Really, I think we all played really good as a team,” he said. “We didn’t have any big plays or anything, but we moved the ball as a team and everybody kind of did their part. We’re just trying to take baby steps and get better.”
And the Bears did improve with running back Tyler Showers and Kenny Burton coming up with some big plays. George also said he was impressed with outside linebackers Michael Murphy and Kendrick Baldwin.
“The good thing about it is we got better from Week 1,” he said. “We’ve just to continue doing that.”