Sports fans from all over are plenty familiar with the Stoops last name, but that’s no surprise.
Bob’s the head man for the Sooner football team, which in turn makes him the closest thing to the President of the United States around Oklahoma.
He’s a pretty popular guy, but Bob’s two sons—Drake and Isaac—are also emerging on the local sports’ scene as people to look out for.
The twin brothers are sophomores on the Norman North football team, and it appears the sky’s the limit for the up-and-coming duo. Drake’s one of the top targets for the Timberwolves at receiver, with 492 yards and two touchdowns on the season, while Isaac played in the secondary before breaking his wrist against Edmond North last week.
“They’re just now sophomores,” said Norman North head coach Brent Barnes. “They’re young and they play a bunch because they’re competitive and are really hard workers. Whether they start or not, they’re getting a lot of playing time.”
Not only are the two brothers getting playing time on varsity at a young age, but they’re doing it on a very good team. The Timberwolves are one of the top teams on the west side with a 5-2 record, and they made a statement a couple weeks ago with a blowout win over Mustang.
“We always say that it doesn’t matter what age you are, if you’re able to compete and be the best guy at the position you’re going to play. That’s just the way it goes,” said Coach Barnes. “Both Drake and Isaac have shown they’re ready to compete when given the opportunities.”
The Stoops brothers didn’t just show up and expect to be contributors right away. It was something they both set as goals in the offseason.
“Drake and I talked about getting playing time every night when we’d be at home and after every workout,” said Isaac. “We wanted to make it to every work out and not miss a single day. Our goal was to be apart of the team at the highest level.”
The two brothers have been around successful Sooner football programs their whole lives, and they picked up on a few good habits.
“My Dad doesn’t have to tell us to go to attend every workout. That’s something we do to better ourselves and the team,” said Drake. “That work ethic was probably inherited from him.”
Along with the coaching lineage throughout their family, the two brothers also have the luxury of being a twin.
“Isaac and I always have each other’s back, and if things go wrong he’s always here for me. We push each other every day to be the best we can be,” said Drake.
Having a twin brother has its perks, but it can also have its downfalls.
“Sometimes getting all the comparisons is hard because we’re twins and we play the same sports,” said Isaac. “People always try to ask whose better and stuff like that, so it can be hard at times. We never let it get between us.”
Since they’ve been labeled “Bob Stoops’ kids” their entire lives, Drake and Isaac wanted to make sure it was known they weren’t going to be rewarded playing time unless they earned it first.
“That’s always been a chip on my shoulder. Everyone just assumes that every thing’s given to us,” said Isaac. “Our teammates know us, and know we work hard in the weight room and on the field.”
Their head coach definitely takes notice.
“They both have a tremendous work ethic and level of competitiveness that you don’t always find at a young age. They both want to be the best they can be, and they bring out the best in others as well,” said Coach Barnes. “They have a natural understanding of what it takes to compete and they really work for the things they’re trying to achieve.”
Growing up as coach’s kids, Drake and Isaac were able to soak in the atmosphere at one of the best college football programs in the nation. Those incredible experiences proved to be beneficial for their love of the game.
“We’ve had a football in our hand ever since we were really little. With our Dad being a coach, he always encouraged us to play football,” said Isaac.
Bob’s passion for coaching wore off on his two sons over time, and now they can both see themselves following their father’s footsteps.
“Isaac and I both want to get into coaching when we get older. I think it would be a fun profession to be around college kids and still be around the game as we get older. It’s almost like still playing,” said Drake.
Being both a prominent college football coach and a father isn’t the easiest thing to do in the world, but Drake and Isaac think their Dad does a pretty solid job at both.
“He gives us tips of what we can work on to improve our game. He never gets mad or talks down to us, he’s just always really supportive and helpful,” said Isaac.
While a lot of kids have a hard time listening to their parents, the Stoops brothers have learned a lot from their Dad.
“He taught us to work hard every day and to take nothing for granted,” said Isaac. “He preaches to stay humble, and not let anything get to your head. He reminds us to work for everything and don’t allow anything be given to us.”
Along with having the guidance of their Dad, Drake and Isaac also have some awesome mentors when it comes to the OU players they’ve come across.
“I love Sterling Shepard and Durron Neal. Both of them have been really nice to us, and I study their game since I idolize them and they play the same position,” said Drake.
Isaac also looks up to Shepard as a player and a person.
“Sterling’s probably been the biggest mentor to me. Not just because we both wear the number 3, but people always said he was undersized and wouldn’t go anywhere, and that’s some of the stuff I’ve been told,” Isaac said. “He’s proved everyone wrong and made a name for himself. We also appreciate that he’s come to our games to support us before.”
While their role may be limited as sophomores, it’s safe to say we can all expect to hear a lot more from the Stoops duo before their time’s done at Norman North.
“I’m certain that both of those guys are going to maximize their ability so when the leave this program they’re going to be as good as they can be,” said Barnes. “Their demeanor and the way they compete will almost guarantee they’ll maximize their talent.”