More than 35 former Texas high school football standouts are taking part in the biggest job interview of their lives to date. They come from all parts of the state, as far west as El Paso and as far east as Mount Pleasant. There is one thing that many players still carry with them: pride in where they come from.
Aaron Jones has talked about the gratitude he has for the support from El Paso. So has D’Onta Foreman, who talked extensively on Thursday about the support from his hometown of Texas City on his back. That’s one thing that many of the other players still embrace amongst the chaos.
“The support means a lot,” said Ricky Seals-Jones, who hails from Sealy, “Coming from a small town, a lot of people just pass by it on the way. If you don’t stop to eat, you’ll miss it. But, just being able to be out here and to put up for Sealy and Texas A&M, I’m very grateful.”
“I’ve got a lot of support because I am one of the first guys to make it out of my hometown (Mount Pleasant),” said Baylor wide receiver KD Cannon,” It’s been really exciting just putting on for my city and making everybody happy.”
Seals-Jones and Cannon both come from towns with a combined population of just over 22,000. There may be that extra spotlight put upon them from the moment their talent is discovered. However, even moving to a bigger spotlight, it isn’t something that fazes them or other prospects at the NFL Combine.
“I’m fine with the spotlight,” Cannon said, “I’ll always be me and that’s something I’m not too worried about.”
Even as they move on to the biggest spotlight in football, they still find time to follow along with what’s going on back at their old stomping grounds and crediting them for helping them be at their best.
“I do keep up with Cedar Hill as much as I can”, said former Ole Miss wideout Quincy Adeboyjo, “At Cedar Hill, we went through what we called “Boot Camp” to show how mentally tough you were. As I’m going through that, the coaches push you to be at your best and I think that’s helped me to me at my best.”
Even former Oklahoma wide receiver and Cameron Yoe talent Dede Westbrook gave his old school a shoutout. “It’s been a long journey for both me and my family,” he told reporters on Friday, “Yoe Pride never dies.”
As each player continues through their draft journey, they’re just looking forward to showing what they can do.
“I’m just going to go out there and compete,” Seals-Jones said, “I feel like I’ve worked hard enough and prepared myself for this step. If I just stay true to myself and compete, I’ll be all right.”
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