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Oklahoma State football: From the B team to the spotlight, it's receiver Jhajuan Seales' time to shine

BY CODY STAVENHAGEN, For The Oklahoman Published: April 3, 2014

— Oklahoma State receiver Jhajuan Seales is used to being overlooked.

He played on the B team his freshman and sophomore years at Memorial High School in Port Arthur, Texas.

As a senior, most Division I schools ignored him despite eye-popping stats and all the right physical tools.

He spent his first year at OSU redshirting and the next season in the shadow of Josh Stewart and Tracy Moore despite a solid 39 receptions for 571 yards.

This spring, that’s changing.

As one of OSU’s most talked about players, Seales will likely enter 2014 as the Cowboys’ top outside receiver in a pass-heavy offense.

After years of people overlooking him, it’s time for Seales to get used to the spotlight.

“It’s like a dream,” Seales said. “Not recruited really, so I had to get here, showcase what I had, keep grinding and go play.”

For Seales, it’s been a ride fueled with determination.

Memorial High coach Kenny Harrison said Seales showed potential as an underclassman, but his skills weren’t developed enough to stand out on a team Harrison said had 16 players D-I players Seales’ junior year.

“He came up through the ranks earning his stripes,” Harrison said. “It wasn’t just given to him. Being on the second team, some kids would take that as a slap in the face, but he took that as motivation and he worked extremely hard.”

By his junior year, Seales was the No. 3 receiver on the varsity squad. One year later, Seales was Memorial’s go-to target, reeling in 54 catches for 1,207 yards and 13 touchdowns.

At that point, Seales proved he was worthy of looks from schools as a two-star recruit. But it didn’t come easily.

“That whole process at first of just calling, calling around and sending tapes off and recruiting was real slow for him, and I don’t really understand why,” Harrison said. “When you become a senior if you haven’t drawn any interest at that time you tend to kind of fly under the radar, especially now with guys being recruited at such a young age.”

Schools weren’t coming after Seales, but with the help of Memorial coaches, he was going after them.

Seales said he sent off countless letters and tapes to colleges across the country. It wasn’t until Harrison directly told former OSU offensive coordinator Todd Monken about Seales that OSU took interest.

Seales committed to Houston, the only other D-I program to seriously look at him, but when OSU outside receivers coach Kasey Dunn went to Port Arthur in late January and offered Seales on the spot, Seales said he quickly switched his loyalty.

“I had no idea he was going to offer me, so when he came down and offered, I happily accepted,” Seales said.

In Harrison’s words, the rest is history.

Seales made an impression with his 6-foot-2 build, 4.4 40-yard dash time and reliable hands. This season, opposing teams won’t be overlooking OSU’s No. 81 on the outside, regardless of whether Seales sheds his quiet demeanor and warms up to being the man.

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