He moved on to Copiah-Lincoln Community College after his days in Natchez. And he continued in both track and football. He earned a roster spot with the Wolves as a defensive back, where he played both cornerback and safety. In track, he was an NJCAA All-American.
"My best times are a 10.49 in the 100 meter, 21.03 in the 200 and 48.9 in the 400. I've been clocked at 4.3 in the 40," he said.
Again, his greatest asset has always been his speed.
But he had a future in football. And it didn't take long for Pendleton, rated a three-star recruit by Scout.com, to realize it. He started to receive letters from prospective colleges, most notably from Ole Miss. The lure of the Southeastern Conference drove him over his final season at Copiah-Lincoln.
"I was able to talk to all the coaches," Pendleton said of the Ole Miss coaching staff when recalling his recruitment. "They were very excited to talk to me. I was very excited. I never knew I was being recruited by an SEC school. It made me work harder. It felt great. They were coming after me."
After collecting 11 pass break-ups and three interceptions, Pendleton earned first team All-State honors from the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior College Coaches. He was also named the MACJC's Most Valuable Defensive Back. He signed a national letter of intent with Ole Miss Wednesday. He'll enroll in January.
"It means a lot (to sign with Ole Miss), coming from not being recruited out of high school at all," he said. "Now I can say that I play for an SEC school. Not only that, but I play for the Ole Miss Rebels."
Ole Miss was a disappointing 4-8 (1-7 SEC) in 2010. One of its glaring weaknesses was its depth in the secondary. Ole Miss ranked 10th in the SEC in passing yards allowed and last in scoring defense.
"We've really tried to recruit hard in the defensive backfield, and Wesley has played both safety and corner," Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt said. "He is extremely fast, and I'm very excited about him."
Pendleton said Ole Miss targeted him early. Being a junior college player, he was two years removed from high school football. He was playing against stiffer competition. And being a defensive back, he filled an immediate need.
"Now I gotta grind even harder, cause I know the SEC ain't nothing to play with," Pendleton said. "When I go up there, I've got to be on top of my game. So I'm going to work hard so I can be fighting for a starting spot."
The 5-foot-10, 175-pound Pendleton is back in Natchez now, but said he'll keep working out. The plan is to utilize the facilities of his old high school with some of his former teammates and coaches.
"I've got a month to work out by myself, so I'll go to my old high school," Pendleton said. "I'll be working out there with my former teammates. Some of my coaches are going to help me out so I can get ready. When I get (to Ole Miss), I'll be ready to ball out."
He has goals for when he arrives January 23. As he already mentioned, he wants to compete for a starting job. Ole Miss lost two members of its secondary, strong safety Johnny Brown and cornerback Jeremy McGee. There's opportunity.
But more than anything, he wants to help Ole Miss get back to a bowl game. Prior to the 2010 season, Ole Miss appeared in back-to-back Cotton Bowls.
"When I get to Ole Miss, first of all, I want to be able to play," he said. "I know there'll be a lot of competition, but I want to be able to say I start for Ole Miss. I want to help Ole Miss get back to a bowl game. I want to do whatever I can. I hope I'll be able to help them out."