June 24, 2012

O'Korn Happy to Be a Cougar

The Houston Cougars just capped off their best recruiting week of the 2013 recruiting season which saw them land four commitments throughout the week and capped the week off when they got the quarterback they were chasing.

Fort Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas quarterback John O'Korn visited campus last week and decided to pull the trigger on Houston shortly after.

"I decided to commit to Houston because it has everything I'm looking for," the Rivals three-star quarterback said. "At Houston I can get a great education, develop under a system that has a great tradition at quarterback, have a shot at early playing time, stay in the south, and play for a head coach and staff with great integrity."

O'Korn cancelled trips to other schools because he felt Houston was the right choice and really enjoyed everything that Houston had to offer.

"I had an amazing experience on my visit to Houston this past week. I was able to see the entire campus, hang out with some of the players, and see a little bit of the city," the 6-foot-3, 210-pound quarterback said. "I also got to see Reliant Stadium. I spent most of the two days I was in Houston with Coach Levine. That made a huge difference. No other head coach had shown me that much attention."

O'Korn came away from his visit really impressed with where the University is going as well as what the city of Houston brings to the table.

"While I was there, the university was under a lot of construction all over campus but I was able to see what all of those buildings will look like by the time I get there," the talented signal caller said. "I'm really excited about it. I didn't get to see a lot of the city itself but I think it's great how diverse it is and there is always something to do."

O'Korn was getting a lot of interest from schools all over the country including a handful of offers from the east coast and ended up choosing the Cougars over North Carolina, USF and UCF and one of the biggest reasons is the relationship he's built with Levine.

"Coach Levine was a big factor in why I committed," said O'Korn. "He has a plan to take Houston even higher than it is right now, and I really bought in to everything he was telling me. I'm really excited to play for him."

O'Korn was already very high on Houston after his offer, but it was the visit that really set them apart from everyone else.

"I knew I wanted to go to Houston while I was on my visit," the talented passer said. "But I didn't want to commit while I was there just because my emotions were running high. After my visit I called Coach Levine and told him that I had spoken with my parents, coach Casullo, and coach Smith, and we all decided that Houston was a great opportunity for me and that I was going to commit. Coach Levine was thrilled. I think he was a little surprised because I didn't really tell him I was getting close to committing or anything."

O'Korn is happy to put the recruiting process behind him and move towards his senior year of high school, he will spend the rest of his summer getting ready for the coming season but plans on bringing his family back to Houston sometime in July.

"Now that I've committed, I can focus on my senior year," he said. "That's very important to me. I'm glad I can stop worrying about college and dedicate all of my time to my teammates here at St. Thomas. Last year didn't end the way we wanted it to, so being able to focus solely on what we've got going on here will be huge for me. We've got some unfinished business and right now we're on the right track to getting back to where we want to be."

St. Thomas Aquinas is not only one of the best football programs in the state of Florida but is arguably one of the top five programs in the entire country. They are loaded with talent year in and year out and O'Korn hopes he can help bring some of that talent to Houston with him.

"I am going to try to get as many of my teammates at St. Thomas as I can," he added. "We've got some great players here that I think can play at Houston as well. One of our linebackers, Lance Virgil, already has an offer, and I know the staff at UH is checking out some of our offensive line, receivers, and defensive backs."
O'Korn is very excited about his future at Houston and with a successful season at St. Thomas schools will likely continue to call, but barring any major shifts within the University he sees himself being a Cougar come signing day.

"I'm hoping this is the end of the recruiting process for me," O'Korn added. "The only thing that would change that would be if there were dramatic changes at Houston. Outside of that, I'm not going to let any schools from the outside change my mind. Houston is where I want to be."

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