Under the Radar

Under the Radar

At five-feet ten inches and 189 pounds, WVU verbal commitment Jetavious Best shouldn't have been overlooked by schools, but that's just what happened, according to his high school coach.

"The kid is a complete back," said his coach, former WVU quarterback JaJuan Seider. "He's not going to wow you with his size, but he runs a 4.3, and he can do it all. He's the type of back West Virginia saw in the bowl game against Florida State."

Seider, who also is sending quarterback Jarrett Brown to WVU this fall, told BlueGoldNews.com that Best stacks up favorably with the top rushers in the state.

"Before the season, everyone said Antone Smith was the best running back in Florida, but I think Jet is right there," Seider said. "I don't think there's that much difference between them.

"He reminds me of Tiki Barber. He can run it inside, catch it, and run it outside."

Part of the exposure problem for Best may have been the fact tht Palm Beach Lakes saw three games cancelled by the hurricanes that pounded the Sunshine State in the fall. However, Seider thinks some other factors came into play as well.

"We missed three games, where he easily would have had another 200-300 yards, Seider said. "He averaged nearly 10 yards a pop, and remember this is Florida we're talking about.

"In the playoffs, he averaged 160 yards rushing, another 100 in receptions and 100 in kickoff returns. He put up 1000 yards every year since his sophomore year," Seider said. "I think it's sShocking that he didn't get the recongnition he deserved. Jarrett was the same way."

Best, like Brown, dedicated himself to improving bewteen his junior and senior seasons. He stopped playing other sports and concentrated on lifiting and working out, and the results were immediate. He ripped off a 4.3 40-yard dash at Nike camp, and built his body up from 160 pounds to his current 189.

"He was playing some basketball, and he knew that wouldn't get him in school," Seider recounted. "He dedicated himself in weight room. Also, a friend of mine opened up a sport training facility, and he and Jarrett trained there over the summer."

Best beginning turning a few heads during summer camps, most notably at West Virginia.

"I think he loved working with Coach Magee during West Virginia's camp," Seider said. "we also went to a camp at Texas, and I thought they were going to offer him there. Finally, we went to a D1 camp in Florida where a lot of coaches were in attendance, but he still didn't get many offers."

Best backed up the summer camp performances by earning Palm Beach County player of the year honors, and selection to the Putback All-Star game, which will be played this Saturday at Palm Beach Royal High School.

"I just go back from workouts there, and Jetavious had an 80 yard run and an 80-yard pass reception," Seider said with a laugh. "He's finally getting everything he deserves."

Best, who was rumored to have grade problems, should qualify. He has been on the honor roll druing the first part of this year, and if he maintains that pace, should have a sufficient core GPA to go along with his test score. And once he gets on the field, Seider doesn't think it will be long before he makes his mark.

"When you see this kid run the ball, well, I think he's the kind of back West Virginia needs. As much as WVU runs the zone play, he's the kind of guy who will get in there and go all the way."

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