After producing a magical senior season where he threw for more than 3,500 yards and rushed for nearly 1,400 yards, Spencer Sanders is now focused on doing big things in Stillwater.
The talented Texas high school quarterback is being touted by many in and outside of the Oklahoma State program as being the successor from Day 1 to departed Cowboys star quarterback Mason Rudolph over Taylor Cornelius, Keondre Wudtee, John Kolar, Jelani Woods and Tracin Wallace. Fortunately for Pokes fans, Sanders has the right mental makeup to perfectly compliment his special talents to make plays with his legs and arm.
“I feel like I fit the offense very well because it’s kind of what we do here at Ryan maybe it’s just called something different like turkey there and ham here it’s just a different name,” Sanders said. “At the end of the day, I feel like I can come in and do my thing and jump right in and start as a freshman right away so I’m doing everything in my power to make that happen.”
Sanders is currently finishing off his senior year at Denton Ryan High (Denton, TX) while starring on the basketball and track teams this spring but has already made an impact on Mike Gundy and his coaching staff just by the way he handled Signing Day. Trying to set the stage and lead by example, in December on Early Signing Day Sanders sent his NLI before any other recruit to show he was firmly committed to OK. State and to set the tone for a positive recruiting season for the Cowboys.
(Sanders) said ‘It’s hard to lead when you’re in the back,’” OSU head coach Mike Gundy told the media on Early National Signing Day. “So, I’m all in.
“I think he’s a special player. He’s been raised the right way. He’s got a good momma and daddy at home, which is generally a good indication that they’ll be quality young men that fit our culture.”
In an era where players tend to be indecisive, swept up in the fanfare of all the attention they are getting, or simply doing things to get the most attention, someone the caliber of Sanders is rare. He held firm through his early commitment of being a Cowboy despite receiving offers from schools all over the nation and recovering from a torn ACL his junior season.
Many recruiters and fans quickly point out the fact that Sanders racked up over 14,000 total yards in his Denton Ryan career without completely playing all four quarters in 80 percent of his games due to his team’s dominance. A big stat they fail to point out is that he went 46-6 in his career as a starter and put up 24 points or more in every start of his career but one.
“He loves to win, and he takes great care of the football which is something we preach often here,” said Conroy Hines, Sanders H.S. offensive coordinator. “Spencer is a leader and is going to try and put things on his back especially during crunch time and he’s going to hang on to the ball and not make that stupid throw which is going to cost you the game. I don’t know how he will progress over the next four years at Oklahoma State, but he will be a great player.”
For those that think Sanders is all hype, I challenge you to watch his Hudl highlights and not be impressed by the dual threat quarterback. As you will see Sanders often routinely keeping his eyes down field, while going through his progressions to find his target and make huge chunk plays.
If all else fails, then he simply looks, runs and uses his 4.4 speed to make multiple defenders miss in the open-field. Combine this with the high swag, strong mental makeup and the want to be great and it’s very easy to see why Sanders could realistically be the opening day starter without being an early enrollee.
“There’s always pressure because that goes with the game of football and I know I will have butterflies inside if I’m starting from Day 1, but having so many people have confidence in me that I can get the job done is what pushes me to be the best I can be,” Sanders said. “I’m going to do my best, compete and no matter if you tell me it’s impossible I’m not going to stop and I’m going to ask what I can do to be better to take whoever spot, because no one is going to work harder than me,”