Former Putnam City Standout Clay Relocates to Oklahoma State
STILLWATER -- As we have always said, the NCAA Transfer Portal does take, but it also gives. Oklahoma State scored a give on Monday as former Putnam City High School standout and Arkansas freshman letterman on the defensive line at weak-side defensive end Collin Clay went on Twitter to say he was coming back home to play at Oklahoma State.
Clay had been offered by Oklahoma State coming out of high school, but chose the Razorbacks over offers from the likes of the Cowboys Baylor, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa State, Michigan, North Carolina, Oregon, TCU, and Texas Tech.
The 6-5, 285-pound Clay had a solid senior season for the Pirates with 62 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and 3.0 sacks. However, he had an above average freshman season for the Razorbacks as he played in 11-of-12 games for Arkansas. He registered his first collegiate tackle against Texas A&M and finished with three tackles in the hard-fought loss to the Aggies. He also had three tackles in games against Mississippi State and LSU. He had two solo tackles in a loss to Auburn. Overall on the season, Clay finished with 17 tackles, five unassisted tackles, and .5 tackles for loss.
Clay went into the NCAA Transfer Portal after the season that also saw Arkansas fire their head coach and staff before hiring SEC veteran offensive line coach Sam Pittman as their new head coach.
Clay is a big defensive end that actually is big enough to see action inside, especially in a three-man front. He is athletic, runs well, moves well, uses his hands fairly effectively. If there was a knock in his high school days it was his consistency, but that tends to improve with maturity. He will be coming back to be a part of a team where he knows members well, including having played against offensive lineman Bryce Bray and walk-on Cade Cavender from Bixby. He knows Trace Ford well, who also plays the hybrid Leo end position on the Oklahoma State defense.
Clay further fortifies the defensive line, which returns everybody except defensive end Mike Scott. Clay would come in as a sophomore and would be subject to the transfer rule. It is likely he will challenge that, in part, based on the complete change of coaching staff at Arkansas. That will be something to watch whenever his case for a waiver comes up with the NCAA.
Clay will enroll and be part of the off-season and spring football this next semester. He is likely not the final contribution to the Cowboys this spring from the transfer portal.