Zack Poff goes over some of the players selected for the 2016 MaxPreps Junior All-American team.
The big frame. The long locks. The rifle right arm. The good looks. By all appearances, Trevor Lawrence has it all.
The Cartersville quarterback was selected the MaxPreps 2016 Junior Player of the Year not just for his looks, but also for his production.
The 6-foot-5, 197-pounder led the Hurricanes to a 15-0 record and second straight 4A Georgia state title by completing 250-of-406 passes for 3,904 yards and 51 touchdowns.
He was voted the Player of the Year in the star-studded state of Georgia by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which says Lawrence is 2,477 yards and 40 TDs from breaking the state record of 13,077 and 159 held by none other than Deshaun Watson, of Gainesville.
Lawrence, 42-2 as a starter and winner of 30 straight games, is following Watson to Clemson.
An opposing coach, Brian Nelson of Mary Persons, told the AJC about a specific play that sold him on the talented quarterback.
“We flush him to his right; he got all the way to their sideline, reversed field, made a couple of really good football players miss, came all the way back to his left and threw a 30-yard strike in the back of the end zone for a TD," Nelson said. “I just kind of shook my head and told our coaches upstairs, ‘Not much we can do about that.’
“Yes, he is as good as advertised."
Lawrence leads 60 juniors on the All-American list.
First Team Offense
QB – Trevor Lawrence, 6-5, 197, Cartersville (Ga.)
The No. 1 junior recruit in the country backed up his ranking by throwing for 3,904 yards and 51 touchdowns as the Hurricanes (15-0) won their second straight Georgia 4A title. He’s committed to Clemson.
QB — Alex Huston, 6-1, 185, Glendale (Springfield, Mo.)
The potent gunslinger racked up the most passing yards in the nation (6,131) and an astounding 81 total touchdowns in guiding Glendale to the Missouri Class 5A state quarterfinals.
RB — Zamir White, 6-1, 210, 195, Scotland (Laurinburg, N.C.)
In 11 games, White rushed 175 times for 1,693 yards and 26 touchdowns for the 14-1 Fighting Scots, who lost in the state 4A semifinals. White is ranked the No. 1 junior running back in the country by 247Sports.
RB — La’Damian Webb, 5-8, 180, Beauregard (Opelika, Ala.)
Webb carried the ball 311 times for 3,235 yards (10.4 yards per carry) and 42 touchdowns for the 13-1 Hornets, who won their first state 5A title. In the title game, a 33-13 win over Wenonah, Webb rushed 51 times for 352 yards and four TDs.
RB — Daniel Bangura, 5-10, 170, Harvest Prep (Canal Winchester, Ohio)
Bangura broke virtually every Ohio record with 4,128 rushing yards on 372 carries and 54 touchdowns as the Warriors finished 10-4, losing in the state VII semifinals. He rushed for more than 300 yards seven times, including a season high of 451 and four TDs in a 44-21 win over Danville.
WR — Amon-Ra St. Brown, 6-1, 187, Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)
Ranked the No. 3 junior receiver in the country by 247Sports, St. Brown caught 60 passes for 1,229 yards and 21 touchdowns for the country’s No. 8 Monarchs. He also averaged 30.5 yards per 11 kickoff returns.
WR — Drake Stoops, 5-11, 175, Norman North (Norman, Okla.)
Son of Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, the standout 86 catches for 1,536 yards and 20 touchdowns for the 12-1 Timberwolves. He broke 100-yards receiving seven times during the season with highs of 11 catches, 201 yards and three scores.
TE — Brevin Jordan, 6-2, 200, Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas)
Rated the No. 2 junior tight end in the country by 247Sports, Jordan had 27 catches for 501 yards and nine touchdowns for the consensus national champions.
OL — Brey Walker, 6-7, 317, Southmoore (Moore, Okla.)
The 11th-ranked junior recruit overall has already committed to Oklahoma. He led a SaberCats offense that averaged 423 yards per game, including 170 on the ground and 253 via the air. Southmoore finished 6-5.
OL — Cade Mays, 6-6, 311, Knoxville Catholic (Knoxville, Tenn.)
The nation’s No. 3 rated tackle and top Tennessee recruit, led a 10-2 team that average more than 350 yards per game including 236.7 via the air. Mays has 11 offers but has committed to Tennessee.
OL — Curtis Dunlap, 6-5, 350, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
Ranked the 10th best junior guard in the country, Dunlap led the nation’s third-ranked team to an 11-0 record and 388 yards per game almost evenly divided between the run (188) and pass (200).
AP — Derion Kendrick, 6-1, 185, South Pointe (Rock Hill, S.C.)
The nation’s No. 20 team (15-1) needed all of Kendrick’s vast skills. Ranked the No. 10 junior receiver in the country, Kendrick played quarterback and had 2,265 yards passing and 24 touchdowns during the 10-game regular season. He also rushed for 457 yards and one score and also added an interception on defense.
AP — Erik Ezukanma, 6-3, 180, Timber Creek (Fort Worth, Texas)
One of the nation’s most productive receivers, Ezukanma had 88 catches for 1,494 yards and 20 touchdowns for the 7-5 Falcons. He also rushed 29 times for 358 yards (12.3 per carry) and three more scores.
K — Barret Pickering, 6-0, 175, Hoover (Ala.)
Made a school-record 19 field goals, including a 42-yarder in a 17-7 win over previously unbeaten and nationally-ranked McGill-Toolen in the state 7A title game. It was the 12th state title for Hoover (12-2) which finished No. 23 in the country.
First Team Defense
DL — Micah Parsons, 6-4, 235, Central Dauphin (Harrisburg, Pa.)
The nation’s No. 5 junior recruit overall and No. 2 defensive end led his team to a 10-2 record. The Penn State commit had 22 tackles in six games and two sacks.
DL — Taron Vincent, 6-2, 285, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
The country’s No. 1 defensive tackle is an imposing presence. Vincent proved his worth by engineering 92 tackles, eight quarterback hurries and five sacks for the No. 3 Ascenders’ stout defense.
DL — Xavier Thomas, 6-3, 255, Wilson (Florence, S.C.)
The No. 2 junior recruit in the country and top defensive end plans on enrolling at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. this month. He’s got 28 college offers. He had 131 tackles and seven sacks at Wilson, which lost in the first round of the payoffs.
DL — Eyabi Anoma, 6-5, 230, St. Frances Academy (Baltimore, Md.)
The nation’s fourth-rated junior defensive end led St. Frances to a 10-2 record in 2016. With Anoma drawing at least double teams, the Panthers recorded a pair of shutouts.
LB — Palaie Gaoteote, 6-2, 220, Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas)
The nation’s top-rated junior linebacker and No. 15 recruit overall was the leading tackler for the consensus national champion Gaels (15-0). Gaoteote averaged 6.8 tackles per game.
LB — Dax Hollifield, 6-2, 225, Shelby (N.C.)
North Carolina’s No. 4 junior recruit overall led the Golden Lions to a 16-0 record and state 2AA title. Shelby allowed 148 points all season and Hollifield had a team best 146 tackles, 18 sacks and one interception.
DB — Patrick Surtain II, 6-3, 190, American Heritage (Plantation, Fla.)
Ranked the top cornerback in the country, teams rarely threw to Surtain’s side of the ball for the 14-0 squad. Surtain was in on 20 tackles and two interceptions. American Heritage finished No. 10 in the country. Surtain has 33 collegiate offers.
DB — Asante Samuel, 5-11, 175, St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
Another South Florida standout with a famous NFL father, Samuel led the Raiders to a 13-2 record and No. 6 final national ranking. Similar to Surtain, teams rarely ran or threw to Samuel’s side. He finished with 26 tackles and two interceptions.
DB — Caden Sterns, 6-2, 187, Steele (Cibolo, Texas)
The LSU commit and fourth-ranked junior safety in the country led Steele to a 14-2 record and 6A-2 finals appearance by recording 73 tackles and four interceptions.
DB — Kelvin Joseph, 6-1, 190, Scotlandville (Baton Rouge, La.)
Another LSU commit, Joseph led Scotlandville to a 13-1 record and spot in the Division I playoff finals. He had 67 tackles, three interceptions and 22 pass breakups.
AP — Olaijah Griffin, 6-0, 178, Mission Viejo (Calif.)
One of the nation’s top ranked junior cornerbacks, Griffin led Mission Viejo to an 11-1 record by hauling in 39 passes for 759 yards and 11 touchdowns, and racking up 35 tackles and two interceptions.
Source: Max Prep