McManus envisions breakout season in 2016


Shannon Stowers

Wide receiver Deon-Tay McManus attempts to catch a pass against Old Dominion University during the 2015 season.

Marshall University redshirt sophomore wide receiver Deon-Tay McManus is expected to be one of the team’s top receiving options next season as he is looking to rebound from a subpar 2015 season.

McManus totaled 36 receptions for 334 yards and one touchdown this season in what was a disappointing year after the superb impression he made with Marshall fans his freshman year when he recorded 26 receptions for 422 yards and six touchdowns, including the game-winning score in Marshall Conference USA Championship victory.

With spring football having just begun for the Herd, the 6-foot-1, 226-pound talent said he is motivated and ready to challenge his game heading into his junior season.

McManus said after the rough season he had last year, he doesn’t have anything to prove to anybody but himself.

“Nobody puts more pressure on me than myself,” McManus said. “Everything is in God’s plan, so how last year played out, it was just how it was supposed to.”

McManus said although improvement starts with the work he puts in on his own, he realizes developing a rapport with his quarterback is vital to recapture his playmaking form.

“I just want to become better and also build chemistry with Chase Litton so we can be on the same page going into camp,” McManus said.

The Baltimore, Maryland native said he believes this spring season is the perfect time to step up and lead his team in the right direction.

McManus said with senior wide receivers DeAndre Reeves and DeVonte Allen graduating, he is next in line to lead the team, a task he said he is up for.

McManus is accustomed to high expectations as commentators have compared the Marshall talent to NFL wide receiver Anquan Boldin.

“It feels good just too know that people see something great in me, and see that I have potential,” McManus said. “I use it as motivation to push and drive myself.”

While McManus has garnered attention on the field he has also gotten Marshall fans involved off of it with his many hashtags on his social media accounts such as #NoPressure and #DontBlink”.

His most recent hashtag that invites his fans to support him is “#theyear4.

“#Theyear4 means this is the breakout year,” McManus said. “The year I’ve been waiting on since I’ve gotten to Marshall, the year I give Marshall a show they will never forget.”

McManus and the Herd will continue spring practice with the team’s first scrimmage scheduled for April 16 and its annual Green and White spring game scheduled for April 30.

Danielle Wright can be contacted at [email protected].