Shegog set to lead Seton LaSalle’s defensive attack

Wednesday, August 1, 2018 | 5:30 PM

The transition has been smooth.

Seton LaSalle senior Jamar Shegog transitioned from safety to outside linebacker last summer.

He is expected to step it up another notch this year as the leader of the Rebels’ defensive unit.

“Jamar really came on as a player last year during the early part of the season,” said Rob Carter, Seton LaSalle’s coach. “Once he grasped hold of his responsibilities as an outside linebacker, he took off as a player.

“At 6-foot-1, 210 pounds, and with long arms and legs, he has the frame to be a college linebacker and is a natural inside-the-box player. But because he played DB most of his life, he has the ability to cover wide receivers. He is physical, strong and plays with a chip (on his shoulder). He understands defense and was able to make all the on-field calls as a junior last year. He will be the leader of the D this year.”

Shegog, 16, who lives in Coraopolis, is a three-year starter for the Rebels. He was a first-team all-conference selection in 2017.

“Jamar can be described as ‘smooth,’” Carter said. “From how he plays, to how he speaks with others, is smooth. He is a hard-working student-athlete who commands respect from his fellow teammates.

“He is a very good defensive player. I expect him to lead his team with respect, and help this team to achieve its goals.”

Seton LaSalle, led by star running back Lionel Deanes, won the Allegheny Conference championship last year, advanced to the WPIAL Class 3A semifinal round, and finished 9-2 overall.

Deanes rushed for 2,112 yards and 25 touchdowns in 2017, and ended his career as the all-time leading rusher at Seton LaSalle with 5,280 yards.

This year, the Rebels are in the Class 2A Three Rivers Conference, along with Brentwood, Burgettstown, Carlynton, Fort Cherry, Serra Catholic, South Allegheny and South Side Beaver.

“My expectations are high for the team this year. Truly, we are the team to beat,” Shegog said. “We have a lot of returning starters, and that will help us through adversity. I feel we have the talent to make a run in the playoffs and bring a (WPIAL) championship back to Seton LaSalle.”

Shegog has played football since he was 5 and competed with area youth teams. He has grown into a dynamic gridder who not only is strong and athletic, but versatile.

He is listed as a wide receiver/tight end for the Rebels; he also has seen time at the running back position. Among his strengths are his work ethic and leadership abilities.

“Throughout high school, I have played running back, receiver, defensive back, linebacker and tight end,” Shegog said.

Carter plans to utilize Shegog’s versatility to its fullest extent.

“Offensively, he will be a jack of all trades this year,” Carter said. “We will use his athletic nature to make plays; basically, we will get him the ball any way we can.”

Shegog has a 3.4 GPA and participates in several clubs at Seton LaSalle, including the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD), Rebels for Life and Junior Achievement.

“Junior Achievement is a volunteer program where I go to grade schools around the area and teach the students for a day,” he said.

The recruiting process has begun for Shegog, who has been timed at 4.63 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

“Many schools have contacted me and shown interest,” he said

Among those that have been in touch with Shegog are Delaware, Brown, Cornell, Holy Cross, James Madison, St. Francis and Fordham.

Ray Fisher is a freelance writer.

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