There’s an eerie feeling of déjà vu when it comes to Oklahoma junior-to-be wide receiver Jeffery Mead because we have been here before.
This exact same place last spring when talking about what Mead would be able to do as a sophomore for the Sooners.
He said it was a big opportunity for him to develop and earn his way onto the field, and it looked like it would happen when he caught his first career touchdown in the initial game of the season.
But just like his freshman season where Mead also saw early action, his time on the field dwindled as the season progressed more and more.
“It’s the same thing I said last year – development,” said Mead about the difference this spring. “Figuring out how to use my body. I’m a lot stronger than I was last year.”
Mead finished the year with six catches for 66 yards and that one touchdown. He was essentially out of sight and out of mind until a two-catch performance in the Orange Bowl against Clemson.
Always among the most articulate recruits, nothing has changed with Mead in terms of breaking down what that performance means going forward.
“Realistically, none because that doesn’t matter,” said Mead about the confidence built from the two catches. “Our coaches could care less what I did last year. Yea, they took note of it. Yea, they appreciated it. But someone comes out here and does better than me, they’re going to play.”
And there are going to be those guys. Receivers like A.D. Miller and Dahu Green are basically as tall as Mead but bigger in size and eager for their shot as sophomores.
The chance to make something happen has never been bigger for Mead. There is no more waiting behind. All the guys are gone. He should be at the front of the line. He knows it’s up to him to make it happen.
“It’s kind of weird seeing the young kids knowing I was there two years ago even though it only feels like five months ago,” Mead said. “Time is running out, goes by fast. In order to do what I want to do, I have to get on the field pretty quickly.”
Mead knows exactly how that can happen.
He’s not pointing fingers at anybody when it comes to playing time. Mead brings a nice blend of size and speed, but he has to put it all together.
“Competitive catches. Down the field in the air,” Mead said. “Everything else I feel OK. I need to get faster. I need to get stronger. But the one thing would be that competitive catches down the field need to be a bigger part of my game.”