By Mike Kays
Phoenix Sports Editor
Stacy McGee’s got a fresh new opportunity.
After a tough end to his Oklahoma Sooner career, the former Muskogee Rougher is headed to the Oakland Raiders after being selected in the sixth round of the NFL draft Saturday. Oakland took McGee 205th overall with a compensatory pick — the last of their its four sixth-round picks.
Attempts to reach McGee and his agent, Peter Schaffer, were unsuccessful. Will Kiss, media relations executive for the Raiders, said the team wouldn’t make McGee available until after the team’s mini-camp in May.
A redshirt after being signed out of Muskogee in 2008, McGee played in six games in 2012, recording 14 tackles. He missed seven games including the Cotton Bowl for violation of team rules — the Cotton Bowl after a December DUI arrest and the first six games for an undisclosed violation.
McGee was also suspended for the 2011 season opener after being cited for marijuana possession months earlier. McGee went on to appear in the remaining 12 games of his junior year, recording 22 tackles and 1.5 sacks. He started 11 of 14 games in 2010, his most productive season in that category.
Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie said at a post-draft press conference he was convinced McGee was the right pick at that spot.
“The research. Not only doing the research of the people down there and all of that, but it’s the research with him and his group. The people that surround him – his support group, and talking to him himself. You just came away with, ‘I wanted to see what this guy has and give him a chance.’” he said.
“He knows it, but I have no problems bringing him into that locker room. He’s a solid guy that made some mistakes in college and that happens sometimes. But after the thorough research we had with him, we felt good about it.”
David Heath, Muskogee’s defensive coordinator who coached McGee, was “thrilled” when he heard the news.
“I haven’t visited with him since the summer but at that time I remember he was positive and ready to go this past year,” Heath said. “I think it is outstanding and I’m very proud for him.
“He more than deserves the opportunity. Offensive and defensive linemen were a big need in this draft and I think that turned out in Stacy’s favor. Talent-wise and size-wise, there’s no doubt he was worth a pick. He made some wrong decisions but there’s a lot of guys drafted that made wrong decisions. This just gives him the opportunity to put all that behind him.”
McGee is the first player Heath has coached to be drafted. Alton Lusk played for Heath at Guymon and was a free agent for the New York Giants, but didn’t make the roster.