IRVING, Texas — When Jaxon Salinas went to Oklahoma State's junior day last year, many of the program's typical recruiting selling points stood out to him.
Top-notch facilities. An energetic coaching staff. Forty nine wins over the last five seasons.
But one unique factor made OSU Salinas' top choice — the school's graphic design program.
So when the two-star offensive lineman from Irving (Texas) got an offer from the Cowboys during a visit last summer, the choice was easy. And he made the decision official on Wednesday, signing his letter of intent with OSU.
“If I get here, it'll be a miracle,” Salinas remembers thinking during junior day. “I truly love this place. Eventually, I got (the offer). I was very happy the day I did.”
Salinas' interest in graphic design was sparked when he took a class in the subject during his sophomore year of high school. Since then, he's designed a logo for a family friend's fishing lure company. After his football career ends, he hopes to work in advertising.
“I've always liked drawing,” Salinas said. “But in the computer, I can perfect it.”
Salinas, at 6-foot-4 and 290 pounds, can play either guard or center. He's one of five offensive line recruits in OSU's signing class.
“They're getting a throwback, nasty, blue-collar kid who will do right for them,” Irving coach Aaron De La Torre said.
As a two-star prospect, Salinas admits he feels he has something to prove at the next level. But he doesn't hold too many hard feelings about the star rankings, since he wound up at the exact school he wanted for both athletics and academics.
So much so that after OSU offered, Salinas didn't even listen to any other program's recruiting pitch.
“Jaxon never wavered,” De La Torre said. “He had told me, ‘I don't want to talk to no one else.' Even when people would come in, I was like, ‘Nope, he's committed. He's solid.'
“That's the kind of kid they're getting. A kid that stands up for what he believes in. His word is his word.”