“Prior to that, my main goal was just to play somewhere,” St. John said. “I wasn’t really thinking big-time D-I or D-II. I just wanted to get a scholarship. I just wanted to play football somewhere and when they called me, ‘Am I really that good?’”
Bruce Kittle, then coaching OU’s offensive tackles and tight ends, paid a visit.
That gave St. John the answer to his question.
From Fresno, St. John headed to Athens, Texas, where he eventually landed at Trinity Valley Community College.
At Trinity, he was on scholarship for the first time.
“Now I didn’t have to worry about paying for books and stuff like that,” St. John said. “That was a big, big relief.”
After the 2012 season, he signed with Kittle and the Sooners.
Shortly after he signed, Kittle and James Patton, the two coaches who recruited him to Oklahoma, left.
St. John already knew new offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh, who had tried recruiting him to West Virginia.
“He’s hard on me because he wants me to be better,” St. John said of Bedenbaugh. “But that’s what I needed really.”
After redshirting last season, St. John is in the rotation at tackle, hoping to find reps behind starters Tyrus Thompson and Daryl Williams.
“I’m starting to learn how to not rely on pure athleticism like I did in the past,” St. John said. “If anything happens to either Tyrus or Daryl, God forbid, I want to be the next tackle out there ready to go, or even I can spell them a couple series in a game.”
Regardless of his role this season, though, St. John has come a long way.
“Everything’s easier now being here,” St. John said. “It was a struggle but it’s paid off in the end.”