Oklahoma football: Sooners sign a pair of junior-college prospects

by Jason Kersey Published: December 18, 2013

NORMAN — History and tradition made Oklahoma an attractive option for junior college tight end prospect Isaac Ijalana.

“I wanted to be part of it,” Ijalana said in a telephone interview with The Oklahoman.

The 6-foot-5, 235-pounder also saw an opportunity to revive the tight end position at Oklahoma, where it has all but disappeared the last two seasons.

Ijalana was one of two prospects — along with linebacker Devante Bond — to sign with the Sooners on Wednesday, the first day of the winter junior-college signing period.

But for Ijalana to reach this point, he had to endure a strange, confusing month during which he committed, decommitted and then recommitted to OU.

The three-star prospect is originally from New Jersey and played his first season at Lackawanna College in Pennsylvania. He transferred to Pierce Community College in Los Angeles for the 2013 season, and before long began picking up NCAA Division I scholarship offers.

He visited Norman on Nov. 15, and called tight ends coach Jay Boulware right after returning to Los Angeles and committed to Oklahoma.

But a couple weeks later, Ijalana was told one of his science classes wouldn't transfer to OU, causing him to decommit.

“Coach (Bob) Stoops reached out to me the day after I decommitted,” Ijalana said. “He said he'd do whatever he could to help. … We stayed on good terms.”

Even though he found out a few days after decommitting that the science class would actually transfer to OU, Ijalana wanted to diligently consider his options.

“I knew where I wanted to go at the end of the day, but I just wanted to visit some other schools and see what they had to offer,” Ijalana said.

He visited Purdue before calling Boulware on Dec. 15 to again give his commitment.

Ijalana said he'll enroll at OU for the spring semester and participate in spring practices.

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by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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