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Spring Football Preview: Wide Receivers

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Carrying on with our Spring Preview: the Wide Receivers.

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Despite struggling at times, Oklahoma State's passing game managed to amass 3,149 yards last season.  Take away yards that came from the pass back to the QB, run-fat-guy-run, and to yards gained by running back and tight ends (Tyreek Hill falls into that running back category) and you get 2,510, the number of yards from wide receivers. Out of that production, Oklahoma State is returning an astonishing 99.56% (2,499 yards).  With the play-makers setting themselves above the rest, be looking for a return to the explosive aerial attack that was lacking in the better part of last season.

Departing Players

Ra'shaad Samples
Career Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 3 11 3.7 5 0

Coming out of high school, Ra'Shaad Samples was a highly touted receiver who was allegedly faster than Justin Gilbert. However, after redshirting his first season and spending his second behind a slew of much more experienced players, Samples has stated that he will transfer to another school to continue his football career. As of now, it hasn't been announced as to where he will transfer.

Blake Webb

No formal announcement was made with Webb's departure, and it's still uncertain as to why he's no longer with the team. The only thing we know for sure is that he's no longer on the roster. However, he hasn't caught any passes since the non-conference games of the 2013 season.

Returning Players

Brandon Sheperd

Senior | 6-1 | 195 lbs

Career Stats
Receiving Passing
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD ATT YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 39 737 19 87 5 4 69 17 51 0
2013 14 223 16 38 1 2 12 6 13 0
2012 1 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0

Brandon Sheperd had a seemingly quiet season for what will be known as his "breakout" year.  Against Missouri State, Sheperd broke free for an 87 yard touchdown and was a solid receiver all year heading into the final games against Oklahoma and Washington. His explosion in those games amassed 12 receptions for 254 yards and 3 touchdowns. His great hands, impressive vertical, and phenomenal moves will make him a big threat in the Big 12 next season.

David Glidden

Senior | 5-8 | 185 lbs

Career Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 42 598 14 55 2
2013 15 173 12 39 0
2012 1 18 18 18 1

I've always considered David Glidden to be Oklahoma State's not-so-secret weapon. With the most receptions and second-most receiving yards on the team, I expected him to be covered more than he was. But he was able to consistently lose his defenders out of the slot and become an all-over threat on the field. Look for Glidden to remain a staple of the inside passing game.

James Washington

Freshman | 6-0 | 200 lbs

Freshman Year Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD ATT YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 28 456 16 68 6 1 20 20 20 0

Despite being a true freshman out of a 1A high school, James Washington emerged as a play-maker early in the season after shredding Texas Tech's secondary for 87 yards and two long touchdowns. He also had spectacular catches against Baylor and Washington.

We might be witnessing the emergence of Oklahoma State's next acrobatic receiver.

Jhajuan Seales

Junior | 6-2 | 198 lbs

Career Stats
Receiving Passing
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD ATT YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 18 278 15 43 3 0 0 0 0 0
2013 39 571 15 44 3 1 11 11 11 0

During his freshman season, Seales was one of the more reliable receivers in an extremely deep corps. However, he seemed to slip into a sophomore slump, dropping wide open passes and becoming unreliable at times.  He also found himself in Gundy's doghouse hen he was found passed out in the Whataburger drive through. As a result, he lost his starting spot and a decline in playing time. The good news is that while he was struggling at times, he did make several impressive acrobatic grabs.  Hopefully, he'll break out of his funk going into the next season.

Marcell Ateman

Junior | 6-4 | 210 lbs

Career Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 20 268 13 43 0
2013 22 276 13 51 0

Much like Jhajuan Seales, Ateman showed a lot of potential throughout his freshman season. Also much like Seales, he entered into a sophomore slump. After a couple of really good games against UTSA and Texas Tech, Ateman's production dropped off as he saw very little playing time for the rest of the season. He has the size to be a very good deep and vertical threat as we've seen him at times but he needs to get back into the groove and find his place in the rotation.

Austin Hays

Junior | 6-2 | 190 lbs

Career Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 9 57 6.3 15 0
2013 1 8 8 8 0
2012 29 394 14 54 2

After a great freshman year, Hays has been fighting injury every season since, earning himself a medical redshirt off of one.  When he's played, he's been a consistent and reliable receiver out of the slot.  Hopefully, Austin can stay healthy the whole season and work his way back into the rotation.

Chris Lacy

Sophomore | 6-3 | 195 lbs

Freshman Year Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 4 47 12 23 0

Chris Lacy saw a good bit of playing time early in the season but seemed to fade out as the competition got tougher. The sophomore will have to break out during the spring and  practice if he's going to make his way into this insanely deep rotation.

Kameron Doolittle

Senior | 5-8 | 200 lbs

Freshman Year Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 2 40 20 32 0

Kameron Doolittle saw his playing time during the garbage time of the West Virginia and Texas games but did break away for a 32 yard grab against the Longhorns.  He too will have to fight for a spot in the rotation.

CJ Curry
Career Stats
SEASON REC YDS AVG LNG TD
2014 2 18 9 17 0
2013 1 10 10 10 0
2012 2 33 17 25 0

CJ Curry has been fighting for his spot in the rotation for years and just maybe this is his year to get into the regular rotation after getting cleanup duty in 2014 against Missouri State and West Virginia.

Newcomers

Keenen Brown

RS Freshman | 6-3 | 205 lbs

Keenen Brown was a highly touted 3-star receiver out of Houston, Texas who spurned the likes of Florida, LSU, Michigan State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, Texas A&M, and Wisconsin to come to Oklahoma State.  He just finished his redshirt season and will be looking to get into the rotation as soon as possible.

Cole Neph

RS Freshman | 6-3 | 205 lbs

Cole Neph was a 3-star out of Owasso, Oklahoma who was being recruited by Kansas State and UTSA before walking on at Oklahoma State.  He too will need a breakout to get into the rotation but the good news is that he has the best hair for a football player I've ever seen.  And yes, even better than Quinn Sharp's.