POY Watch: Cartersville’s Lawrence poised for another title run
For the sixth season, GHSF Daily will be keeping track of the race for state player of the year.
Previously a weekly feature, the POY Watch will be presented bi-weekly this season.
Unlike the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Super 11 or all-state teams, which reflect the players’ individual talents, the POY Top 10 is more about a player’s projected impact on his team and the state as a whole this year.
Georgia’s all-classification players of the year are more likely to be quarterbacks and running backs than linemen, although there have been exceptions. They are more likely to play on state-contending teams. These subjective rankings reflect the players’ chances of having the best POY resume in December.
The POY Watch is designed to be a fun look at some of the best players. Players naturally will drift in and out, and that should not be taken as a critique of their season. It is an honor to appear in the POW Watch even for a single week.
1. QB Trevor Lawrence, Cartersville:If Lawrence merely repeats his 2015 performance, it will be hard to deny him. He threw for 3,655 yards and 43 touchdowns for a 15-0 team. He’s the consensus No. 1 recruit nationally among juniors. Cartersville starts the season ranked No. 1 in Class AAAA.
2. QB Jake Fromm, Houston County:Fromm is the reigning Gatorade state player of the year for a season in which he threw for 4,099 yards in 13 games. He’s rated the No. 3 pro-style QB in the country and is committed to Georgia. His team starts No. 3 in Class AAAAAA in preseason (and is the composite No. 1 team). Houston County has never won a state title.
3. RB J.D. King, Fitzgerald:King is the state’s leading returning rusher with 2,432 yards. He plays for the No. 1 team in AA, one that has not won a state title in nearly 70 years. He could finish as one of the top 10 rushers in state history.
4. QB Chase Brice, Grayson:Brice leads the most talented team in the state, one that is ranked in the top five of virtually every national poll. He threw for 2,716 yards and 29 touchdowns last season. Brice is committed to Clemson.
5. RB/DB Jamyest Williams, Grayson:Williams rushed for 1,339 yards last season and also started at cornerback at Archer. It will be harder to stand out at Grayson, though.
6. QB Ryan Glover, Woodward Academy:Glover is a sleeper pick. Woodward is ranked No. 2 behind Cartersville in AAAA and could win its first title since 1980. Glover, who is committed to Colorado State, threw for 2,740 yards and 26 touchdowns last season.
7. RB Sheldon Evans, Roswell:Evans rushed for 1,777 yards last season. If he can get closer to 2,000, and third-ranked Roswell can win the title, Evans will be in the conversation.
8. QB/WR/DB Richard LeCounte, Liberty County:LeCounte is the consensus No. 2 prospect in Georgia, rated No. 1 by some. He has more than 300 tackles and 4,000 all-purpose yards. He could lead Liberty County, No. 9 in AA, to its first region title.
9. RB Colby Wood, Jefferson:Wood averaged 176.6 yards rushing per game last season for a total of 2,119 over 12. If Jefferson, ranked No. 7 in AAAA, could go the distance, that average comes to 2,649 yards over 15 games.
10. QB Deejay Dallas, Glynn Academy:Glynn caught fire last season once Dallas became the quarterback around the fifth game and went on to reach the state finals. Dallas rushed for 1,161 yards. An AJC Super 11 pick, Dallas is committed to Miami.
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