The Norman Transcript


May 11, 2013

Only thing certain about T-Wolves is they would not be denied



So, there’s that.

On the other hand, the first thing coach Geo Claros said on the topic, prior to Thursday practice, was, “We’re talented enough to be there every year.”

Also, several players have already made arrangements to be playing college soccer in the fall. And many on the roster were big parts of last year’s state title, as first-year starters. They better have been talented to do that, right?

Go another direction.

It’s about the program.

North has won four state titles, played for another, and been among the state’s final four for 11 consecutive seasons. You play soccer for North, this is what happens.

“I think we’ve created an environment … We try to teach everyone,” Claros said. “We’ve tried to come up with a system that, hopefully, these guys are paying attention to. I mean, they’ve heard it so much, it should be second nature to them.”

The players feel the weight of expectation.

“We don’t want to come out here and just play. We want to win and be the best, and that’s kind of our attitude, even in Celtic,” senior defender Trent Laffoon said. “We’ve just been working. It builds up a competitive nature to where we want to work to the be the best.”

Curtis McRae, also a senior defender, concurs.

“There’s no question, we always have to come out and work our brains out and stuff,” he said. “We can’t settle for just one state championship because it’s our senior year. We can’t settle for anything.”

The program?

The players?

For a moment, Claros is one side. In the next, he’s on another. The program may demand greatness, but somebody’s got to deliver it.

“They’re a group that never got deterred. I’m pretty sure every one of them wanted to be on the team as a freshman and everyone expected to come in and play as a sophomore and it didn’t happen,” he said. “It didn’t knock them off course. They’re resilient. They stayed the course. They realized their time was going to come and when it did it would be a crucial situation, and they would have to step up big and they have.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Big 12 Media Days Football Big 12 could fill NCAA’s vacuum; make the discipline calls, too

    It doesn’t look good for Joe Mixon.  Though his attorney, Kevin Finlay, said the most ballyhooed prospect of the Sooners’ most recent recruiting class “instinctually defended himself against further harm,” it just doesn’t ...

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tang making a splash on state level

    The Sooner Swim Club has produced a long string of great athletes in Norman. Norman North has won back-to-back state championships and senior Justin Wu owns several state records and last week qualified for the U.S. National swim meet. The ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Bradford facing another year of scrutiny in newest season

    ST. LOUIS — It’s become a rite of training camp for Sam Bradford. Every summer, he deals with the oversized burden of living up to getting picked first overall in 2010. The St. Louis Rams quarterback is not surprised that once again, he’s ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Judge rules against owner Donald Sterling, but lengthy saga far from over

    LOS ANGELES — Embattled Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling lost his attempt to block the $2 billion sale of the team to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer....

    July 29, 2014

  • T-Wolves land guard Mo Williams

    MINNEAPOLIS — Mo Williams is on his way to Minnesota, which means J.J. Barea could be on his way out....

    July 29, 2014

  • LSU freshmen face misdemeanors

    BATON ROUGE, La. — Two LSU freshmen football players face charges, one for allegedly stealing a bicycle outside Middleton Library and the other for allegedly tossing firecrackers into a campus apartment....

    July 29, 2014

  • Fitzgerald says players’ push for union brought Northwestern together

    CHICAGO — No matter how this season unfolds, Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald insisted there is no more unified team than his Wildcats. For that, he credits the push for them to unionize....

    July 29, 2014

  • Delany rides fence with PSU

    CHICAGO — Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany took a non-committal stance on an effort by five Pennsylvania Congressmen to rescind sanctions against Penn State for its handling of the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal....

    July 29, 2014

  • Murray St. aims to be OVC contenders

    Fifth-year Murray State coach Chris Hatcher has returned the program to OVC relevance thanks to his exciting “Hatch Attack” offense. The Racers will need more results if they hope to be serious contenders....

    July 29, 2014

  • Healthy Claiborne ready to show his worth to Cowboys

    OXNARD, Calif. — Morris Claiborne got on Terrance Williams’ nerves the minute the competition started at training camp for the Dallas Cowboys....

    July 29, 2014