East St. Louis’ Estes expects to ‘finalize’ college decision this week

Rey Estes: “Without football, there’s no options.”
Courtesy of Reyondous Estes

Reyondous Estes vividly remembers a conversation with teammate and East St. Louis High School wide receiver Jeff Thomas his sophomore year.

The two Flyers had just finished up a visit to the University of Missouri — Estes’ first college visit — and, speaking to The Maneater on Thursday, Estes recalled that conversation.

“I was telling Jeff it wouldn’t be bad to go to Mizzou,” Estes said. “They showed us love, and it was like we were the only people on campus. They made you feel welcome, they came to you with open arms, it was a good feeling, and they’ve continued to do that.”

Now, just a week after receiving an offer from the school that boasts about former teammates he calls “brothers” — Missouri sophomores Terry Beckner Jr., Natereace Strong, Greg Taylor and freshman Tre’vour Simms — Estes faces a tough decision, one he said he will “finalize” with his mom this week.

Estes is currently committed to Western Michigan, but the Mizzou offer is something he said he’s been waiting on and that it puts him “in a predicament.” Estes has already spoken with East St. Louis coach Darren Sunkett about the offer, and his coach pointed to the fact he’s one of the few quarterbacks from his area, if not the only one, to earn an offer from a school in the Southeastern Conference.

“When I heard that, I’m like, ‘Wow, that’s pretty amazing,’” Estes said, “because it’s something no kid has done. Maybe that’ll open a lot of eyes.”

The Tigers are also in hot pursuit of Thomas, a top-100 player in the country. Estes and Thomas are “best friends,” as seen in a film made by Sports Illustrated.

In October 2015, Estes was in a car accident, lost consciousness and was hospitalized. In the SI film, Thomas said: “It makes it real, real. That you almost lost the closest person you had.”

With the season rolling around, Estes expects to make the decision soon. He said being able to make this decision is exciting.

“Without football, there’s no options,” Estes said. “It’s a way out, it’s a ticket for me, and I treasure that every time I think about these opportunities and every time I step out on the field.”

Edited by Theo DeRosa | tderosa@themaneater.com

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