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Family motivates Moss into Division I recruit

Menlo-Atherton receiver Jalen Moss works out in Menlo Park on Nov. 24, 2020. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo
Menlo-Atherton receiver Jalen Moss works out in Menlo Park on Nov. 24, 2020. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo

Those around Menlo-Atherton junior receiver Jalen Moss drive him to the top of his game.

Moss and his mother have been extremely close since Moss was born. That’s his go-to person for everything. They moved to the Bay Area together a few years ago.

They do everything for each other, and Moss wants to make his mother proud throughout his career and life.

“It’s because she’s been with me through everything thick and thin,” Moss said. “We really just had this connection ever since I was young, just talked about everything, just open dialogue with each other. We just built that connection just by like spending time with each other, just the little things that really count.”

Once Moss and his mother moved to the Bay Area in seventh grade, that’s when he noticed that’s when things really began to click for the future Division I college football player.

“I really just took off from there,” Moss said. “Started playing more offense, and it just took off from there, just kept practicing and getting great.”

Immediately, Moss arrived at Menlo-Atherton as a freshman two years ago and proved himself once again.

On a squad that won a state championship, Moss had one interception – which came in Menlo-Atherton’s 33-28 victory over Wilcox in the Central Coast Section Division I championship – during that postseason run.

But that was only the beginning for the young star at receiver.

Moss followed up that freshman campaign with 28 catches for 541 yards (the second-most on the roster behind only Oregon signee and U.S. Army All-American Troy Franklin), nine touchdowns and then two picks defensively, as the Bears went 7-4 overall and won a Peninsula-Bay League title.

“Just the people around me to push me,” Moss said. “My Mom, friends have always just helped me really just put it all on the field because that’s all you have at this point. You only have one chance, so I really just put it out on the field and let it do it’s own thing. That’s what really helps.”

And the recruiting process has really taken off for Moss.

Arizona State, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oregon, Oregon State and UNLV sent offers his way thus far, and Moss is enjoying the journey while focusing on the entire student-athlete scope of whatever university becomes his future home someday.

“Academics most importantly, just relationships with coaches and just for me to do great at a school,” Moss said. “I want to have that opportunity to play and the opportunity to do something and make a name for myself.”

Over the course of this offseason, Moss is utilizing each second to his advantage on the football field before the season eventually rolls around.

He’s worked on his lower body, explosiveness and getting off the ball, all the while getting 1-on-1 time with coaches and asking for their help and advice to perfect his craft.

“Mentally, I’ve really been pushing through school and all that,” Moss said. “I’ve been honing in and just getting my work done and practice on top of that was really tough, but I just have that mindset to like get it done and push through and all that. And then physically my body was worn down, but I just stayed pushing and grinded it out.”

Some ambitions for Moss this season include not only a high level of success athletically, but also to achieve high marks in the classroom.

“For myself and my team, I really just want us to, first off, kill it in the books, in the school to where everybody is eligible to play,” Moss said. “And then secondly just make it long in the playoffs, just grind out the season week by week, just be able to push through and just do the little things to make us go far and go to state.”

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