Since that camp and the recent Nike camp at Stanford, however, Dean's name has obviously been uttered or thought about by college coaches at a decidedly more frequent pace. "It's been kind of crazy, but that's good," Dean said of the attention lately from colleges. "I had some offers before the camp, but there's been a lot of attention since."
Much of the increased attention has been due to Dean's athleticism, the 6 foot, 4 inch, 190 pounder showing very good feet, solid explosiveness, the ability to be nimble and physical out on the field. His 4.53/40 is also very solid, Dean showing that while he's not a polished receiver, his projection down the road as one is impressive. Add to that the fact that as a junior, he averaged a whopping 30 yards per catch, Dean's potential is eye-popping.
"I like what I can do out there, close to the line or down the field," DeLaShaun said. "I've got the ability to do just about anything, no matter what the DB is doing to stop me."
All that and more are some of the reasons that Dean has offers from the likes of UCLA, Michigan, Nebraska, Colorado, San Diego State and New Mexico; something that Dean's been dreaming would happen one day. "You always hope something like this will happen to you, but you never really know," he said. "I've worked hard to get to this point, though, so I'm just going to keep working that much harder to get better than I am and keep getting better."
Nebraska hasn't been shy about letting Dean know how they feel about this Fairfield, California standout, Dean stating that he'd talked to the Husker's head coach Bill Callahan along with safeties coach Bill Busch (the primary recruiter for his region) and NU's receiver coach Ted Gilmore.
What he learned from the conversations was enough to put Nebraska on his list of teams to look much harder at in the future. "They sound like a great program and they have a pretty long tradition of winning there," Dean said. "And, they just put in the "West Coast" offense last year, so they still need a lot of wide receivers."
With the UCLA offer and obviously, the chance at a USC offer on the horizon, though, some might wonder if other schools are just wasting their time. "If it feels like the place for me, I'll go anywhere and I mean anywhere," Dean said. "It would be nice to stay closer, but maybe I take a visit to someplace on the east coast and that feels right, that's where I am going to go."
"More than anything, I want to feel at home someplace and I can't say where that will be at, so I don't know."
The uncertainty is ok, because it's early and nobody has to know just where they want to go unless they are committing tomorrow. Dean isn't and his off-season won't be in narrowing his choices, rather just checking out the choices he has, which will most certainly grow as the months progress. "I'm just eager to check everyone out," he said. "I'm wanting to visit as many places as I can, but I know I am going to take all of my official visits and after all that, we'll see."
Dean has a 3.0 GPA and will retake his SAT