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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Hangin' with Mr. Cooper

I headed out to Calvary yesterday to interview Randy Zeigler about his decision to switch his college baseball commitment from Florida State to LSU. When I arrived at the campus, Randy and Khiry Cooper, Zeigler's Calvary baseball teammate and standout wide receiver on Class 2A's No. 1-ranked football team.

While Zeigler gave measured responses to the questions, Cooper was his usual effervescent self, cracking jokes and not taking anything too seriously.

Until his baseball future came up. He joked he would announce his signing at Independence Stadium and I made a crack about Minnesota drafting him as Torii Hunter's potential replacement.

We all shared a laugh before the money part of the conversation took over. Cooper's stock sits in the top-10 round range and possibly higher at this point, which inevitably led to the "how much money would it take" part of the conversation.

Cooper never threw out an amount he would sign for. In fact, in a rare moment for a high school athlete, he made a response that would make Scott Boras jump off a cliff.

"It's not all about the money guys," Coooper said. "God will provide me what I need."

There, in those 10 or so words, Cooper summed up all that is good with student-athletes of his kind -- the ones with their heads on straight, not looking for a quick seven-figure payday.


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