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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 26, Digital 6

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 26, ISSUE 6 39 A TRANSFORMATION At the time, DeAngelo Yancey didn't realize it. He was impressed with himself, the way he snatched 32 passes for 546 yards in his first season at Purdue. He came in a rookie, had the support of Darrell Hazell and was starting by Week 6. And, even before that first start, Yancey hardly came off the field. That first season, he unofficially played 445 offensive snaps, 134 more than the next-highest receiver (Cameron Posey). And even though his father told him not to get too caught up in the numbers and to work like he hadn't arrived, Yanc- ey wasn't listening to any of it. He was too caught up. He was the stud. He was the guy on the rise. So he didn't respond like he needed to. He didn't work like a guy who needed to improve. And it frustrated those around him. "No matter what anyone said, it was just in his head that he thought he was better than everyone else and he could do whatever he wanted and didn't have to work as hard," Posey said. But the lack of work showed up in Year 2. Yancey was held without a catch in Week 1, had only one in Week 2, and then appeared to maybe turn the cor- ner in Week 3 with a highlight-reel TD catch against Notre Dame. But the next week against Southern Illinois, Yancey dropped a touchdown pass. "I'm like, 'Here we go again.' I think that's where the confidence left, the fourth game when I dropped the touch- down. After that, I was just out there (without focus) then," Yancey said. By the end of the season, he was replaced by a true fresh- man, Phillips, and his weight reached 224 pounds. He fin- ished the season with only 12 catches for 147 yards. After that season, Gerad Parker got moved from tight ends to receivers coach and wasted no time in having a heart-to-heart with a player he thought could be so much more than he showed as a sophomore. "From a distance, you certainly felt like he was a guy who (No.) 1, didn't know how to work in a way to make himself great," Parker said of his impressions of Yancey as a sophomore. "Everybody, including myself, has little gray areas or dark spots we have to work on. And we also have all these blessings we've been given that you've got to be able to use at your best. "(NFL receiver) Julio Jones is gifted beyond measure in about every phase of being a wideout. There's still things Julio, I'm sure, busts his tail to work on. Whereas Yance isn't gifted beyond measure in some areas. There's some areas he's uncommon. But in those areas (he's not), you can either hide from them or work on them to get them to elevate. I think he didn't know how to work on things that we've got to get better. Tom Campbell Yancey has demonstrated an ability to make big plays. He had eight catches of at least 25 yards last season.

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