With loads of unofficial visitors in Norman this weekend it's unlikely that many had any bigger weekend than Missouri City (Texas) Ridge Point linebacker Cameron Townsend. The 6-foot-1 200-pound defender not only took a flight with his father from Houston to Oklahoma City to catch the Sooners 20-17 win over TCU but more importantly was part of a huge win in Ridge Point's history.
Townsend, who squared off with local power Fort Bend Marshall and it's three-headed duo of 2015 talent, Kendall Sheffield, J.W. Ketchum, and Davon Crookshank.
His team's big win over Marshall, the Buffaloes first loss in district 22-4A, was a physical battle on the field but says afterward he knows each of the three Marshall stars and wished them the best.
"I'm cool with all of them, I played with Kendall Sheffield when I was in sixth grade, he came and played for my team. J.W. I played against him my last year playing little league. Crookshank I just met last year, I went to one of Marshall's basketball games and saw him there and we started talking. If I see any three of them I could chat with them," Townsend said.
Townsend, who admits to growing up a Texas fan, and spent last Friday under the watchful eye of Longhorn assistant Larry Porter, said that there was an aspect of watching the Sooners key home win that was different from some other venues he has visited.
"I think it was crazy how the game was sold out, I went to Texas and everything was filled up but you know how most stadiums, the top corners people won't sit there. At Oklahoma there were still people there. Every third down, or when the team made a big play the crowd was so loud," he said.
"The fans were just great, they had that big chant where they did 'boomer' and 'sooner'. You had all the different people tailgating, I liked the whole campus, and the way it looked."
In what was just Townsend's second trip to Norman he says that fans may not have recognized him but several linebackers did.
"I only saw that with the 2014 guys were being recognized by fans, none of them recognized me, but a lot of people recognized them - that was pretty cool. Maybe next year that will be me," he said. "Coach [Tim] Kish introduced me at the position meeting before the game, but a lot of guys introduced themselves to me but a lot of them remembered me from my visit in the summer, and they were saying 'what's up Cam'. "
One linebacker that may, or may not, have spoken with Townsend clearly spoke to the 2015 Sooner offer with his play is sophomore Eric Striker. Townsend says the two have some definite similarities in their game.
"Oh definitely, I was looking at their outside linebackers, No. 19 in particular. I saw the guys work and I think the coaches did a real good job of blitzing one and sending the other coverage and switching that up. Kind of keeping the offense on their toes," Townsend said.
"Seeing that was real cool, I think that's something that I like to do. I like to pass rush and I like to drop into zone coverage. The way they executed it all was really nice."
As mentioned Townsend finished his game in Southwest Houston, slept little, and then woke up to catch a flight to Oklahoma City. Is the distance from home going to be an issue for him?
"I personally don't have a problem going down the street or to the other side of the country. As long as I can call my family and chit chat with them, it's nice to see them but they can come to any game whenever I'm in Texas. My family is pretty good with traveling. It'll work itself out."