Originally Published: Feb 3, 2010 7:2 PM CDT
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer
JENKS, Oklahoma -- Jarrett Lake surprised some by wearing cardinal instead of crimson on National Signing Day, signing with Arkansas after verbally committing to Oklahoma.
“I really liked the coaching staff, I really liked the idea of them having me play linebacker. I just feel real comfortable playing the position and the way they had me playing it,” Lake said.
While the switch was a shock to some, Lake actually parted ways with Oklahoma over a month ago.
“Shortly after the Christmas holiday we had a mutual decision between the two of us that we weren’t going to proceed any further and Jarrett pursued some other options,” Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops said.
Lake missed his entire senior season at Jenks after the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Association found that he violated the dual residency rule. At the time of the investigation, Lake's aunt and his guardian, Claira Williams, had homes in North Carolina and Tulsa. Lake said it was tough to miss his senior season, but he’s ready to move on.
“I’m just ready to get this year behind me and play on the Division I level with some of the best talent in the country,” Lake said. “(Arkansas) got a bull who is hungry to get back out there on the field and who gives 110 percent every time he does something.”
Lake added that his time away from the field was a “blessing in disguise.”
“I was actually able to focus more on my grades so I could qualify for a Division I scholarship,” Lake said.
Despite his absence from the field, Rivals.com ranks Lake as the 23rd-best player in Oklahoma and Scout.com rates him 44th at the outside linebacker position. The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder said he will be ready for the college level transition.
“I’ve been working out with this guy downtown, and my father trains me for my footwork and my linebacker agility,” Lake said.
Lake joins several area players heading to Fayetteville, including Calvin Barnett, who changed his commitment to the Razorbacks on signing day.
“It’s a great feeling to be surrounded by some of the guys you have played against and knowing the type of athletic ability that they have,” Lake said.