Former Guyer, Oklahoma State WR Josh Stewart declares for NFL draft

Oklahoma State wide receiver Josh Stewart, a former Guyer standout, celebrates his first-quarter touchdown in the Cotton Bowl between Oklahoma State and Missouri at AT&T Stadium on Friday. Stewart, a junior, declared Tuesday for the NFL draft this spring. (Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News)

Josh Stewart has heard a lot of opinions about his NFL draft prospects recently, but on Tuesday he said the only one that matters is his own as he officially declared for the upcoming NFL draft following his junior season at Oklahoma State.

Stewart played his final college game on Friday in the Cotton Bowl at Arlington’s AT&T Stadium and scored a 40-yard touchdown before leaving late in the game with a concussion.

On Tuesday, he had hired an agent and declared for the draft, more than week prior to the Jan. 15 deadline for underclassmen to declare. He is the 17th underclassman wide receiver to declare for the draft. Last year, 29 receivers were selected over the three-day, seven-round draft.

“I’ve talked with a lot of people, and everyone has their own opinions and at the end of the day it had to be for me and my family,” Stewart said. “That’s what I felt would be best and the decision I’d be happy with. That’s really all that matters, and that’s what it came down to. I’m willing to take whatever comes. I’m excited for the chance to live out my dream. It’s going to be a good journey.”

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Two Denton ISD DEs shined in bowls

 

Florida State defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. and Oklahoma State defensive Jimmy Bean both starred in their respective bowl games. Edwards graduated from Ryan, while Bean graduated from Guyer. (Denton Record-Chronicle illustration/Ben Baby)

While watching Florida State come from behind and beat Auburn in a thriller for the final BCS championship before we head to playoff system (rejoice!), it hit me.

There’s a pretty solid chance that in two years we could have two high draft picks in Denton ISD products, who just happen to play the same position.

You see, I covered the Cotton Bowl on Friday and saw former Guyer standout Jimmy Bean dominate a tough Missouri offensive line. Then, of course, on Monday night everyone watched former Ryan standout Mario Edwards turn in an equally dominant effort against Auburn to earn himself a national championship.

In fact, the numbers are eerily similar.

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Guyer-ex Ramacher switching positions for Cowboys

Guyer linebacker Dominic Ramacher (14), shown here in a 2011 file photo, tackles a Cedar Hill running back in a game at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

Heading into his senior season at Guyer back in 2011, Dominic Ramacher had already gone from being the Wildcats’ backup quarterback behind J.W. Walsh to being a tight end/H-back type player that was without a doubt the key behind the engine that was the Wildcats’ potent rushing attack.

But that year, his final one with Guyer, Ramacher switched to middle linebacker to replace three-year starter Blake Terry, who had moved on with graduation the prior year.

Now, Ramacher is at Oklahoma State with Walsh and other former Guyer standouts Josh Stewart and Jimmy Bean, and on Thursday Ramacher switched positions once again. The move was first reported by The Oklahoman on Sunday.

The redshirt freshman will move from fullback, where he’s buried behind experienced players, to linebacker after approaching his coaches about the possible move recently.

“My whole life I have played defense — and linebacker specifically — so I have always had a defensive mind and instincts,” Ramacher said after practice on Tuesday. “When I was recruited here as an athlete they weren’t sure what I was going to do and they felt I could help more as fullback. I helped the best I could but I thought the best thing for me was to be a linebacker. I went to Coach Singleton [running backs coach] to make sure it was okay and then I went to [defensive coordinator] Coach Spencer.”

Ramacher, who’s currently listed at 6-3, 230 pounds, racked up 95 tackles as a senior at Guyer to go with a sack, four pass break-ups and three interceptions. He also moved back to offense and played both ways in the postseason before Guyer was defeated by Mansfield in the area round.

Ramacher was highly rated coming out of high school and was ranked the No. 27 tight end in the nation by Scout and the No. 26 “athlete” in the nation by Rivals.

Now, he believes he’s in a place where he can get on the field faster and better help the Cowboys.

“I am picking it up really fast,” Ramacher said. “I feel like it’s all coming back to me and it’s going to be good.”

Former Guyer strength coach not forgotten by Stewart

Former Guyer and current UT strength and conditioning coach Bryan Kegans (left), shown here in a 2005 file photo during his playing days at Texas Tech, blocks former Oklahoma and Lake Dallas standout Dusty Dvoracek. Kegans recently moved on from Guyer to accept an assistant strength and conditioning job at Texas. (The Dallas Morning News file photo)

We’ve known around these parts for quite some time that Guyer’s strength and conditioning program was on and poppin’, as the kids like to say.

Whether it’s Jerrod Heard, and J.W. Walsh before him — quarterbacks power-cleaning more than 300 pounds — or heck, even Heard’s backup, David Haynes, or whether it’s former tackle Patrick Morris’ gargantuan feats in the weight room before earning a full ride to TCU, the weight room at Guyer has been a competitive place for quite some time.

And depending on who you ask, the strength of the program, in the trenches especially, has been a key part of its success over the last five seasons.

A lot of that success has had to do with former strength and conditioning coach Bryan Kegans, a rarity at the high-school level for being solely in charge of strength and conditioning and not a position on the football staff. He started his stint at Guyer as an offensive line coach as well as strength and conditioning but over his final couple of seasons moved strictly to strength and conditioning.

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Josh Stewart vs. Eric Ward: Media Day Style

 

Oklahoma State wide receiver and Guyer-ex Josh Stewart, left, and Texas Tech wide receiver and former Wichita Falls Rider standout Eric Ward are the top two returning wide receivers in the Big 12. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle (left), USA Today (right))

The two top returning wide receivers in the Big 12 entering the 2013 season both have ties to this area.

Obviously, Oklahoma State star Josh Stewart starred at Guyer for three seasons and helped lead the Wildcats to their first state championship game appearance in 2010 before breaking out last season for the Cowboys and posting 101 receptions, 1,210 yards and eight touchdowns (seven receiving).

Eric Ward was battling Stewart in high school as a standout receiver at Wichita Falls Rider, the cream of the District 5-4A crop back then with Ward and Michigan-bound quarterback Shavodrick Beaver.

In 2008, when Guyer was starting its rapid ascent to Texas High School Football powerhouse status, Stewart was a diminutive sophomore cornerback and Ward was a beastly wideout committed to Oklahoma before his last-second flip to Texas Tech. Continue reading

Stewart, Walsh earn Big 12 accolades

Oklahoma State receiver Josh Stewart, right, dives in for a touchdown against West Virginia on Nov. 10, in Stillwater, Okla. Stewart, a former Guyer standout, scored three touchdowns in the Cowboys' 55-34 win. (Brody Schmidt/Associated Press)

Things are going pretty for Guyer High School football right now, as the Wildcats are in the Class 4A Division I regional final on Saturday and two of the program’s more successful alumni were honored on Big 12 all-conference teams on Wednesday.

Oklahoma State sophomore Josh Stewart was named to the first team of the Associated Press Big 12 team after finishing in the top-10 nationally in receptions (96) and top-20 nationally in receiving yards with 1,154 while adding seven touchdown receptions during the regular season.

His former, and current teammate J.W. Walsh was named the Big 12′s Offensive Freshman of the Year (not a raunchy joke-telling freshman) on the Big 12 coaches’ team after leading the conference in pass efficiency, throwing for 11 touchdowns and three interceptions while finishing third on the team in rushing and scoring seven times on the ground in nine games this season.

Walsh took over for an injured Wes Lunt against Louisiana-Lafayette and lit up the Cajuns before making three straight starts. His starting run came to an end when he broke his leg against Iowa State but still managed to throw for 400 yards and finish the game.

Local fans will be able to see Stewart and Walsh in the Heart of Dallas Bowl, which will be played at the Cotton Bowl against Purdue on New Year’s Day at 11 a.m.