Reagor feels snubbed by ESPN ranking, looks to prove doubters wrong in 2019

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Jalen Reagor feels like his outstanding play has been overlooked and that he has something to prove. Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto.

TCU wide receiver Jalen Reagor took to Twitter last week to express his feelings about how experts think his talent stacks up with the nation’s best players.

ESPN released its list of the top college football players for the 2019 season last week and Reagor landed in the No. 46 spot.

“Lol #46…,” was all the receiver out of Waxahachie had to say regarding his ranking.

The tweet has since been deleted.

His feeling of being unfairly ranked seems to be justified, as he produced one of the best receiving seasons in TCU history last year. 

Though he played high school football just 38 miles from TCU, being a Horned Frog wasn’t one of Reagor’s top choices for college ball. 

The son of former Texas Tech defensive tackle Montae Reagor, who won Super Bowl XLI with the Indianapolis Colts, Reagor was a standout at Waxahachie High School.  Two-straight 1,000-yard seasons to end his high school career earned him a four-star ranking by 247Sports.com and offers from several schools in the Big 12.

Looking to follow in the successful footsteps of his father, the 5-foot-11, 195-pound wideout originally committed to Texas Tech, but de-committed in March 2016 to verbally commit to Oklahoma. 

Just seven months later, he would change directions again, this time to head to Fort Worth to “stay closer to my family and friends,” he said in an interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Reagor totaled 576 receiving yards and eight touchdowns during his freshman year, leading the Horned Frogs in both categories. His first career touchdown reception, a 38-yard Hail Mary from quarterback Kenny Hill to put TCU up for good against SMU, was just a sign of what was to come for the talented freshman.

TCU wide receiver Jalen Reagor hauls in a 93-yard touchdown pass against Stanford in the 2017 Alamo Bowl. Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto

Reagor’s brilliance in his first year earned him Co-Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year and 247Sports True Freshman All-American honors.

Although the Horned Frogs saw three different starting quarterbacks over the course of the year, Reagor caught 72 passes for 1,061 yards during his sophomore campaign. Both of those marks rank second in the TCU single-season record books, only behind former Horned Frog and current Washington Redskins’ receiver Josh Doctson.

Sixty-one percent of his catches last season went for either a first down or touchdown.

On top of that, the receiver caught a touchdown pass in the final seven games of the regular season for TCU, good for a school record. He also became the first wide receiver in the history of both TCU and the Big 12 to have 100 yards rushing and 90 yards receiving in the same game, finishing with 121 yards rushing and 91 yards receiving in a 31-24 win over Oklahoma State on Nov. 24.

“It’s just all surreal,” Reagor said after the win over the Cowboys. “I know I’m capable of playing like that. It’s just the way that happens. It’s just a blessing.”

This record was recently cemented on a plaque in Amon G. Carter Stadium, cementing Reagor as one of the all-time TCU greats.

Reagor posted this picture on Twitter, saying “All glory to God!” in response to the plaque. Photo via @TheJalenReagor on Twitter.

“Having a plaque and having my name in the history books means the world to me,” Reagor said.  “This has been one of my dreams since I picked up a football. All glory to God!”

Reagor’s dominance in his second season did not go unnoticed as he was selected to the All-Big 12 Second Team. The receiver was also voted the MVP for the TCU football team by his teammates for the 2018 season, the first wide receiver to earn the award since Cory Rodgers in 2004.

 The Texas native has speed that often leaves his defenders in the dust. This dates back to time as a track star at Waxahachie, winning a state title in the 5A Boys long jump at the UIL state meet in the spring of his senior year. His 40-yard dash is clocked at 4.32, which earned him the third spot on Bleacher Report’s list of the 10 fastest college football players of 2019.

“I can run all day,” Reagor said in a interview with Sports Day. “There’s a difference between track speed and football speed. But when you mix the two, you know what it’s like.”

Along with his breakaway speed, Reagor became known for his ability to win contested balls in his second year, which is uncharacteristic of a wideout at his size. Last season, he caught 15 of 31 possible contested catches. 

Perhaps his most impressive of such receptions came in the form of a 34-yard pass from quarterback Grayson Muehlstein in which Reagor seemingly took the ball out of Oklahoma State cornerback A.J. Green’s hands.

With his lower-than-expected ranking by ESPN and many predicting TCU to have no chance to win the Big 12, Reagor has plenty of motivation going into the season. 

“I don’t look at it as pressure,” Reagor said. “I look at it like I’m supposed to be here. God put me here for a reason. Now, I just have to embrace it.”