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February 6, 2013

Steven Parker: Junior of the Year

Though many players came into the year with more notoriety no player achieved more both individually and from a team standpoint than Jenks, Okla. defensive back Steven Parker, who not only helped lead the Trojans to a state title but also managed three interceptions, 52 tackles, and a sack.

HD: JENKS STEVEN PARKER The combination of singular success and leading to the 6A state championship helped make Parker SoonerScoop.com's Junior of the Year for the class of 2014.

The talented defensive back was known as a young player in South Tulsa with a lot of promise but had been in the shadow of former junior of the year Alex Ross during his sophomore season as well as, eventual, 2013 Oklahoma signee Jordan Smallwood.

Then Mike Stoops, making the simple rounds of spring evaluations got by Jenks to check out the always formidable Trojans and check in with legendary coach Allan Trimble. It took little time for Trimble to point out his next star, the third Trojan to be honored as the junior of the year, and almost as little time for Stoops to pounce on it.

"I guess (Jenks head) coach Trimble, was just pointing out the people that started defense last year, and he introduced (Stoops) to me," Parker said back in the spring.

Later Parker and Stoops had a chance to converse about how things might fit with Oklahoma and Stoops made an offer.

"We just kind of talked, talked a bit about everything and then he just said how would you like it if I offered you a scholarship to the University of Oklahoma," he recalled.

That was followed by offers from Oklahoma State, Alabama, and Tulsa with many more expected to come.

But with a loaded class of 2014 it's more than about just offers for Parker who has shown primetime playmaking ability on the biggest stage, including an interception against Norman North in the 6A state championship game. And while many had thought of Parker as a corner early in his career he shows some natural gifts as a safety including a stellar performance against Broken Arrow in one of the most anticipated games of the Oklahoma high school season.

So at this point last year Parker may have been largely unknown, it's also a provider of motivation to the sophomore class in Oklahoma that there is still plenty of time to be mentioned among the nation's elite prospects.

Honorable Mention: Deondre Clark, Douglass and Justice Hansen, Edmond Santa Fe

Previous Winners:

2012: D.J. Ward, Lawton
2011: Alex Ross, Jenks
2010: Josh Turner, Millwood
2009: DeMarco Cobbs, Mustang
2008: David Oku, Carl Albert
2007: Jameel Owens, Muskogee
2006: Austin Box, Enid
2005: Jermaine Gresham, Ardmore
2004: Phillip Dillard, Jenks and Reggie Smith, Edmond Santa Fe



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