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Oklahoma football: Stadium upgrades have given Bob Stoops and his staff a strong new piece of recruiting ammunition

The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents approved $370 million in renovations to Gaylord Family — Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on Wednesday, and OU coaches wasted no time in using the plans to their advantage on the recruiting trail.
by Jason Kersey Published: June 28, 2014

“It will be very different,” Boren said. “It won’t be just simply a weight room in the way we’ve thought of weight rooms in the past. It’ll be a very comprehensive training facility.”

Newsome, who visited Oklahoma in March for the Sooners’ Junior Day, said he’s been highly interested in OU since he received a scholarship offer in November and that he would’ve remained interested even without the renovations.

But he did admit being surprised by the Sooners’ small weight room.

“It wasn’t what you’d expect OU to have,” Newsome said. “You expect them to have something bigger. I mean, it was nice, but I think (Stoops) knows it’s time for something bigger and different. They definitely got something bigger and different.”

Newsome recently announced his top five schools on Twitter, naming OU, Notre Dame, Oregon, Texas and UCLA as his current favorites. He’s scheduled an official visit to Norman the weekend of Nov. 8, when the Sooners host Baylor.

The full effect of these upgrades on recruiting probably won’t be felt until the construction is completed — OU officials hope the work is done by the start of the 2016 season — but the eye-popping renderings will have to do for now.

“To be able to walk into an incredible, first-class facility that meets every one of their needs as a recruit, and then to walk in the stadium and have that impact of the stadium tower along with the whole south end zone bowled in is gonna be special,” Stoops said. “I think the crowd noise factor is gonna be louder, so it’s gonna impact recruits even during games.”

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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