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Last year Mansfield, Texas had a big year going 11-2 on the season before losing to Abilene in the Regional Finals of the Texas 5A Division 2 Playoffs. One name that played a huge part for Mansfield during that run was Chad Whitener, 6-foot-1 and 235-pound linebacker who finished the year with 195-tackles, two-interceptions, four-sacks, one-forced fumble and two-fumble recoveries.
So far Whitener does not hold any offers but says he is receiving interest from the likes of Oregon, Texas A&M, Louisiana Tech, Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Arkansas and LSU. Oklahoma had already been showing interest in fellow Mansfield products George Baltimore and Zachary Crabtree, and have also been showing some interest in Whitener as well.
In the final weekend of March Whitener was in attendance at the LSU Spring Game but before that was actually in Norman to see a Sooner practice and talk with the coaches a little bit which included head coach, Bob Stoops and defensive coordinator, Mike Stoops.
According to Whitener the thing that really stood out to him about talking with the Sooner coaches their straight forward nature and a feeling that they weren't sugar coating things.
"Just went up there for practice and I really enjoyed myself," Whitener said. "I walked around the facility upstairs, like the trophy room for a little bit. And then I got to talk to both the coach Stoops' and coach (Tim) Kish. And I just kind of walked around and talked with the players and everything."
Coach Kish talked with Whitener about what he should pay attention to when it comes to watching film, which plays a huge part in how the Sooners prepare for their opponents.
"He just really talked about how they prepare more in the film room then they do on the field. And we just talked how to review film and things to try and focus on," he explained.
The three-star prospect liked how the linebackers handled themselves out on the practice field, according to Whitener he saw this as a reflection on Kish.
"He seemed like a pretty swell guy," Whitener began about what he liked about Kish. "All his guys seemed real loose when they were doing individuals and like in group and team they knew when to switch their gears, so, I like that."
According to Whitener the Sooner practice was interrupted with three fights while he was there which included a couple players who are known for their physicality on the field.
"The passion that they practice with," Whitener responded when asked what stood out to him about practice. "Because there was like three fights that broke out while I was there, Trey Millard fought Tom Wort and some lineman did too."
No need to worry about any behind the scenes injuries happening because of the fights as Whitener said that the fights were broken up quickly.
Now that Whitener has seen up close what the Sooners are all about he says the Sooners have moved up his list of schools that interest him.
"They have definitely gone up for me. I like it a lot," Whitener stated. "Just the facility and how much emphasis there is on football, I like that."
While on the visit Whitener says he got the email addresses he needed and has already sent film over since returning from his trip to Norman. So now he is waiting to see what the Sooners think of him after seeing his film to decide if he will attend the spring game on April 14 or not.
Some visits he knows he will for sure take coming up in the near future are to Oklahoma State on April 21 and Whitener also says he will visit Texas A&M twice soon as well.