Oklahoma State football signee Tykie Andrews of Enid is driven to win
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ENID – Cameron Conder joined the football coaching staff at Enid High School in 2015, and his teaching tenure brought him to Hayes Elementary, where he directed physical education.
One day early in the school year, a fifth grader challenged Conder to a singles basketball game, guaranteeing victory over his teacher.
Tykie Andrews has always been a confident kid when it comes to sports.
Andrews signed a letter of intent to play for Oklahoma State Football at Enid High School Wednesday morning, signaling the next challenge in his athletic journey.
A star receiver for Enid, the 6-foot, 185-pound Andrews was an All-State second-team pick for The Oklahoman who caught 135 passes for 1,551 yards and 17 touchdowns last fall and Enid to his best season in years helped win first playoff since 2006.
It was the culmination of years of hard work and dedication to improvement. And don’t underestimate the value of those one-on-one matches with his fifth grade PE teacher.
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“I can feel good about it today because I can say I knocked him out in basketball when I was 10,” Conder joked. “Me and Tykie developed a special bond that started back then. Part of what we’re building here is competing every day. And it’s going in that direction. I would compete with Tykie every day and make sure he knew it was about competing.”
After moving a few times as a teenager, fifth grade was Andrews’ freshman year at Hayes Elementary.
“I had to try to assert my dominance as the top athlete in the school,” Andrews said with a smile. “I challenged him to a basketball game and the result wasn’t what I wanted, but he’s seen something in me ever since.”
The Cowboys also signed two more offensive skill position players, receiver Jalen Pope of Aledo, Texas, and running back/receiver Sesi Vailahi of Salt Lake City, as well as Broken Arrow offensive lineman Jamison Mejia Wednesday morning.
The fast, 6-foot, 180-pound Pope was a star on the Class 5A-1 state championship team, finishing the season for 1,252 yards and 14 touchdowns. And 229 of those yards came in the title game, a 52-14 win over College Station, which set a record for yards received in a Texas State championship game.
Vailahi, a 5-foot-11, 190-pound product from West High School in Salt Lake City, had 240 rushing yards, 607 receiving yards and 13 total touchdowns last season. He fills a need in running back where the Cowboys previously had no signer in class.
And Mejia was the latest addition to the class. The 6-foot-5, 270-pound offensive lineman was a first-team pick on The Oklahoman All-State team and announced his decision Wednesday morning.
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In addition to a lone running back and a lone quarterback (Zane Flores, who is already on campus), OSU signed three receivers, five offensive linemen, three defensive linemen, two linebackers, five defensive backs, and a punter. On Wednesday, Rivals.com ranked the class 49th nationally.
The Cowboys lost five receivers to the transfer portal, replacing only three of those spots with incoming transfers. While position is in good hands with experienced players filling out the depth map, the long-term need for depth has been an issue.
This is where Andrews comes in. He had a unique mix of offerings, including programs like Dartmouth, Drake and Navy. But Oklahoma State identified him late in the process and extended an offer in early January.
“It was very stressful,” Andrews said. “I had to be patient. I had to relax and give it all to God and let it happen.”
Relying on his faith became a major focus, especially when he came home to his father, Harold Andrews, who is the associate minister of New Light Baptist Church in Enid. Tykie’s mother Terry died seven years ago.
“Tykie has such a humble heart,” Harold said. “We always put God first.
“I always told him your dreams are as high as you want to achieve them. When you limit yourself, you limit your dreams. His mother looks down on him. He prays and talks to her before every game and we try to keep her memory as part of his journey.
“I’m just glad he can live his dreams.”
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