Wide receiver Myles Alston made a commitment to the Pitt football program back in April and was planning on improving certain aspects of his game during his senior season at Ocean Lakes High School. Unfortunately for Alston and all players in Virginia, they had their season postponed until the spring of 2021.
Alston will not suit up for his high school when they return to the field because he’ll already be enrolled at Pitt, working to get adjusted to life in college and as a Power 5 football player.
This has been a tough last eight months for Alston as he dealt with not only being forced to sit out his final year of high school football, but also with a much larger, more personal loss, the unexpected death of his older brother. Despite being only 18 years old, Alston has been forced to grow up probably a lot quicker than a teenager should have to but thanks to a strong family and a mental toughness, Alston is going to be fine.
“This time period has taught me to be grateful and to never take anything for granted,” Alston tells Pittsburgh Sports Now. “As far as football, back in June, my teammates and I all thought we’d be having our season and never thought anything of it, but we were wrong and it never happened.”
“All of this that has happened has taught me to never take anything for granted and always try to look at things through the big picture. Everything that we get is a blessing from God. These last few months have definitely matured me in many ways and I believe it’s made me a better person overall.”
Although Alston hasn’t been able to play any organized football through his high school, don’t think that he’s just been sitting home waiting for workouts to begin at Pitt. He’s used this time period to set some individual goals that he’s wanted to accomplish as well as working on his football skills playing 7-on-7 football.
“During the quarantine, I’ve been lifting a lot and working on trying to get stronger along with getting faster,” said Alston. “I’ve gotten together with some guys on my team and we’ve thrown the ball around, lifted weights and are trying to make sure that we’re in the best physical shape as possible.”
“Most definitely, that’s just the beginning for me. That play happened because my quarterback and I have a good connection and have worked a lot together. I kind of knew that he was just going to throw it up so I trusted him and he trusted me and I went up and made a play.”
Speaking of play, Alston has done his best to watch his future team play every Saturday. Being a receiver, he’s focused a lot on the offense and was excited when I brought up the name Jordan Addison.
“Jordan Addison is just a dog, man,” said Alston. “Not too many freshman in the country has the number of catches that he does. I love the way he plays. Despite being just a freshman, he went there and basically took over and I’m looking to do the same thing next year.”
Alston is right, in eight games, Addison leads Pitt with 52 catches for 611 yards and 3 TD’s. Those 52 catches are the 3rd most by a freshman in Pitt history, trailing only Larry Fitzgerald (69) and Tyler Boyd (85). The fact that Addison was able to do that in his first season is motivation for Alston.
“I was already thinking that I could do it but now seeing Jordan do it, I know that it’s possible. I know that I could do the same and it’s just a mindset type of thing. I’m happy that he’s doing so well and I think in a couple of seasons, we’ll be seeing him in the NFL.”
Which is where Alston eventually wants to be but that all begins with his preparation, training and producing at Pitt. National Signing Day is one month away so it’s starting to sink in with him that his time in Virginia Beach is ending and the next chapter of his life is ready to begin in Pittsburgh.
“Yes, all of this is definitely settling in especially with my mom, who’s taking it harder,” said Alston. “I’m kind of ready for it and am excited but will probably get emotional even though I said I won’t. I’m starting to think about it and am starting to do some things different at home to prepare myself. I’m just trying to be as mentally prepared as I can be and I know the great people up in Pittsburgh are going to take care of me.”