Notebook: Pierce County QB could be ‘Russell Wilson, but better’

Article and photos courtesy of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution –> Original Article Here

(Branden Camp / Special to AJC)

(Branden Camp / Special to AJC)

The best quarterback that didn’t make our list of the best 10, or even preseason all-state, is probably Pierce County’s Stetson Bennett. Tony Franklin, the offensive coordinator at Middle Tennessee, agrees. He sent this message to Bennett recently: “If u want to be Russell Wilson but better,! let me coach u! I’ll make u the best u could ever imagine!” Wilson, of course, is the quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks. Bennett was 222-of-351 passing for 2,904 yards and 25 touchdowns last season for 7-4 Pierce County. He also rushed for 564 yards and scored 12 touchdowns. Bennett is a 4.0 student who scored 29 on the ACT.

The Wright stuff

Who says three-sport athletes are a thing of the past? C.J. Wright of Screven County is a special case. Wright was selected on GHSF Daily’s preseason all-state team as a defensive lineman this week. He’s a fullback and linebacker. He’s also 52-7 in two years as a heavyweight wrestler. He was third in the state as a freshman and 33-1 as a sophomore but was upset in sectionals and didn’t get to return to state. He won the Region 3-AA discuss (153-01) and shot put (47-06) last spring and was second at state in the shot (51-07).

And he can dunk a basketball

How many players have rushed for 1,000 yards, passed for 1,000 yards and had more than 100 tackles in one season? Not sure, but Model senior Kyler Eldridge came close last season at 927, 1,103 and 124, respectively. He also forced two fumbles and intercepted two passes at linebacker. And he punts. And is a catcher on the baseball team. And can dunk a basketball at barely 6 feet tall. He has 4.5 speed (ran 4.53 at Georgia Tech camp). Eldridge has offers from Air Force, Kennesaw State and others.

Richmond Academy RB is a strong one

Weightlifting is not our specialty, but Richmond Academy has a running back that we’d like to call Pocket Hercules. He’s 5 feet, 8 inches, 185 pounds, and he squats 525 pounds and cleans 305. His name is Adonijah Applebery. “Yes, that is pretty good,” Richmond Academy coach Simon Rodriguez said. “It is more than most collegiate running backs. Derrick Henry from Alabama was 230-240 pounds, and his max in the weight room at Alabama was around the same.”

Fun facts …

Former Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton’s brother, Caylin Newton, is an all-region quarterback at Grady. … Former Heisman Trophy winner Frank Sinkwich’s great grandson, Frank IV, is an all-region lineman at Athens Academy. … Brunswick’s Shawn Smith and Glynn Academy’s Deejay Dallas are opposing quarterbacks on arch-rivals in Glynn County. They are cousins. … Lakeside of DeKalb County has won 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 games the past five seasons. Druid Hills, also of DeKalb, has gone 4-6 each of the past six seasons.

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