The ball has been flying high at Longview (Texas) Pine Tree and 2015 wide receiver Mason Hays has proven himself to be a dangerous threat for opposing defenses.
At 6-foot-2, 195-pound, Hays runs the forty in the high 4.5 to low 4.6 range, but according to Pine Tree offensive coordinator Jeremy Orsagh the times do not accurately portray his speed on the field.
"He's tearing it up," Coach Orsagh said. "I'm telling you that kid is special. He's special. He's leading the state of Texas in three ball games even ahead of KD Cannon of Mount Pleasant. He's averaging 33.7 yards a catch right now. Through three ball games he has 586 yards and 7 or 8 touchdowns. He's unbelievable. Big kid who can run. He's physical, very intelligent."
His numbers have attracted quite a bit of attention throughout East Texas, with even his worst game of the year being better than many receivers' best.
"His worst ball game was against Kilgore and they had three guys on him and he had 7 catches for 174 yards," Coach Orsagh said. "Everyone was like Mason had an awful game. He had 7 catches for 174 yards, that's not bad. He didn't have 240 like he did the week before but my gosh."
His early season numbers are and extension of his sophomore season that saw him claim second-team all-district honors.
"Last year as a sophomore he had 787 yards and averaged for the season 22.4 or something like that per catch," Coach Orsagh said.
Hays is still young and his recruitment has yet to take off, but coach Orsagh believes there is definitely a place for Hays on the collegiate gridiron.
The SMU Mustangs have shown the most early interest in the standout receiver, but other programs are taking notice.
"Everyone who comes in to see Caleb wants to see him," Coach Orsagh said. "They see him and they like him. He's a hell of a player."