Wilcox County’s Nick Marshall compared to Charlie Ward, former NBA player and 1993 Heisman Trophy winner

The AJC will announce its All-State basketball teams on Sunday.

Anytime you talk about the best players in Georgia, Wilcox County superhero Nick Marshall has to be mentioned.

Everyone knows about the Nick the football player, who won Class A Player of the Year honors while leading Wilcox to the state championship.

Wilcox.Ftb.NickMarshall

Will next year be the last year that we'll see Nick Marshall (blue jersey) play football? He might be better in basketball (AJC file)

However, Nick first made a name for himself in basketball after leading his high school to the 2009 semifinals. He played AAU basketball last summer with the Georgia Blazers out of Columbus, earning his first college scholarship offers — again, in basketball.

What did Nick do this year in basketball? The 6-foot-3 junior guard led Wilcox again to the semifinals, averaging 27.5 points, including a 52-point performance in the playoff opener against Montgomery County.

“I’d say Nick is one of the best I’ve seen in high school basketball, and I’ve been around this business for 38 years,” Wilcox basketball coach George Kennedy said recently. “He just does some stuff that is God-given talent that you don’t see every day.”

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UGA is one of several colleges that has offered Marshall in both basketball and football. UGA coach Mark Richt and several assistants had the chance to observe Marshall late in the basketball season.

“What I was told is that (Richt) thinks Nick is really close to being a Charlie Ward-type player,” Wilcox football coach Mark Ledford said recently. “Coach Richt coached Ward at Florida State, and he sees Nick as being the same type of player. Nick is very athletic at quaterback, and also a great basketball player. Of course, Charlie played in the NBA.”

Charlie Ward, a native of Thomasville, was one of the greatest two-sport athletes from Georgia. He won the 1993 Heisman Trophy, and played 11 years in the NBA. Ward currently serves as head football coach at a Texas high school.

Who are the top five two-sport athletes (basketball and football only) in the history of Georgia’s high schools? Is Ward far and away No. 1? Does Marshall crack the top five yet (with one more year left in high school)? Please state your case and post below.

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67 comments Add your comment

Edwin

March 24th, 2010
3:33 pm

A fella by the name of Bo Jackson was pretty good.

E

March 24th, 2010
3:47 pm

Charlie Ward by far.
Nick Marshall is a close second.
Jeff Francouer was pretty good in basketball too.

foxandcoon

March 24th, 2010
3:52 pm

A list…no order
Charlie Ward
Anthony Flanagan
Jeff Francouer (I know, baseball)
Buck Belue (I know, baseball)
Stan Rome

Worm

March 24th, 2010
3:56 pm

Andy Johnson, Buck Belue, Jeff Pyburn, Tony Flanigan and Stan Rome come to mind..

mark olsen

March 24th, 2010
4:54 pm

bo jackson is not from georgia

C tha 1

March 24th, 2010
4:56 pm

A list in no order: Al Pickens, Charlie Ward, Nick Marshall . . . honestly I can’t think of any after that. Hershel Walker . . . he was a beast in track and field.

THEHILLISREAL

March 24th, 2010
5:03 pm

Anthony Flanagan hands down…. but it this guy name Frank Thomas he was pretty good, even though avowedly on Nightline he said he didn’t know how Jackie Robinson was.

Dawg747

March 24th, 2010
5:04 pm

Charlie Ward: Saw him play in High School
Stan Rome: Saw him play also
Nick Marshall
I saw a kid (last name Dixon) from Crisp County. Played basketball and ran track. Jumped center on team with Tree Rollins and could touch the top of the backboard. Won State in track 100 dash. Went to Troy State.
To me Charlie Ward and Stan Rome were the best I ever saw.

Sowega

March 24th, 2010
5:15 pm

Matt Harpring – All State QB at Marist
Charlie Ward
Fred Gibson
CJ Williams

Edgar Allen Podunk

March 24th, 2010
5:43 pm

Keith LeGree, who graduated from Statesboro High in 1991, must be on the list.

He was a McDonalds All-American in basketball, and a third-round draft pick of the Twins in baseball.

LeGree went on to be a four-year starter at point guard for Louisville and Cincinnati, and he got as far as the AAA level as an outfielder in the Twins organization.

Al Beeski

March 24th, 2010
5:46 pm

Al Pinkins & Charlie Ward definitely should be 1 & 2 in this discussion, saw both of them play both sports. And Pinkins had a stronger arm than Ward, but not as complete a quarterback. In hoops, Ward really was an average point guard at TCC & Fla. State, he simply got the job done.

Michael Carvell

March 24th, 2010
6:10 pm

Al, thanks for your response. I’m not sure Charlie Ward would’ve lasted 11 seasons in the NBA if he was an “average point guard.”

Michael Carvell

March 24th, 2010
6:11 pm

Sowega, great one with Matt Harpring. He had D1 offers at QB.

bigdawg

March 24th, 2010
6:19 pm

Terrence Edwards is the best high school football player I seen play at Washington Co High and even a better basketball player. He also played basketball at UGA.

richtreignisover

March 24th, 2010
6:29 pm

Cris Carpenter at Gainesville. He’s a former Major Leaguer and was the punter for UGA. Hell of a basketball player too.

Jaydawg

March 24th, 2010
6:43 pm

Jasper Sanks.Football and competative eating.

SOUTH GA

March 24th, 2010
6:46 pm

Terrence Edwards Washington Co

Andre Smeltner Tattnall (GISA) look him up

Jacquez Green Peach Co
(North/South Game in basketball)
All-State in football
played baseball
finished 3rd in the 100m in track(didnt even like track) A part of the 4×100 state track champs also

Peppi Zellner Mary Person basketball/track

Angelo Taylor Southwest Dekalb track/football

Rondell White Jones Co baseball/basketball

Will

March 24th, 2010
6:49 pm

What about that Wimberly character that participated for Early County High in 1985. Track and football.

Will

March 24th, 2010
6:50 pm

Not only did he participate in High School sports, he defended his country in the armed forces.

country boy

March 24th, 2010
7:50 pm

Goldberg – UGA football and ‘rasslin’

Voice of Reason

March 24th, 2010
8:16 pm

Fran Tarkenton was a pretty fair athlete at both sports. He also played baseball at Athens High. Nuff said!

dooley

March 24th, 2010
8:36 pm

JayDawg, that’s cold, Jasper was very good in football and basketball. What about Quincy Carter.

And also Nicky Pitts. Great in track, football and basketball. Legendary at being drunk between the hedges.

Sowega

March 24th, 2010
8:37 pm

Juan Gaston from Columbia was a beast on the HS level, but a flop in college.

JaxDawg

March 24th, 2010
8:51 pm

I saw Micah Owings play in high school… Still hold Ga record for the most home runs and was a pretty stout basketball player. His younger brother, Jon Mark, was decent in both baseball and basketball at Gainesville too.

Common Sense

March 24th, 2010
9:11 pm

Going Old School here. The two best high school I ever witnessed were both from the early 70’s:

Larry Kinnebrew from East Rome. A true beast. State champ in Discuss and 100 yard dash. I think he beat Herschel one of those years. Around 250 lbs. Saw him run at a track meet in Dalton, and I will never forget him. Would have had a kid like Nick Marshall for breakfast. Played several years in the NFL with the Bengals.

David Moss from Ringgold. Won state champioships in the high jump, I think around 7 feet. Signed a basketball scholarship with Tennessee but lost a leg to bone cancer during his freshman year. Dude could JUMP OUT OF THE GYM!!!

I never saw Stan Rome in person, but watched his cousin Roger play at Dalton Junior College when they had some kick-ass teams.

gaalltheway

March 24th, 2010
9:11 pm

1-Charlie Ward
2-Peppi Zellner Football-basketball-track (played a few seasons with Dallas Cowboys and the Skins)
3-Fred Gibson
4-Terrence Edwards

Another guy i was wondering about was Hines Ward?

gadawgfan55

March 24th, 2010
9:18 pm

I remeber a kid out of Manchester, that was a great rb in football and one heck of a swingman in basketball. I don’t recall his name but i remeber his nickname was “Blue Boy”. I think grades keep him from having a D1 offer, but was one of the best backs to ever play in GSHA. It was the late 80’s, did anyone else see this kid play?

JustMyOpinion

March 24th, 2010
10:38 pm

Anthony Flanagan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PupStar

March 24th, 2010
10:51 pm

It’s Ray Guy. It’s not even really that close. Two State Championships 4year letterman in 4 different sports. Drafted by the Cincinnati Reds. All American punter and safety in college. Member of the NFL All-Time Team.

Hard Truth Soldier.....

March 25th, 2010
12:47 am

Darryl Moore on the 1979 Clarke Central State Champs, They had Charlie Dean at qb, but Darryl played QB/WR and was a guard with the BB team. Grades killed the “original” Michael Vick/ Walt Frasier. He was the total Package, and to this day if you ask Billy Henderson, he’d tell you Darryl was the complete package

Sowega

March 25th, 2010
1:34 am

Add Randell Godfrey to the list – football, basketball, and track!

Zach

March 25th, 2010
2:37 am

AC Cooper of Clinch County. I’m not from Clinch, but story has it Cooper was All-State in football, baseball, and basketball and has about five or six state championship rings. Clinch won state in all three sports in one year and Cooper was the leading man guiding those teams.

[...] Nick Marshall = Charlie Ward? «What I was told is that (Richt) thinks Nick is really close to being a Charlie Ward-type player,» Wilcox football coach Mark Ledford said recently. «Coach Richt coached Ward at Florida State, and he sees Nick as being the same type of player. Nick is very athletic at quaterback, and also a great basketball player. Of course, Charlie played in the NBA.» Charlie Ward, a native of Thomasville, was one of the greatest two-sport athletes from Georgia. He won the 1993 Heisman Trophy, and played 11 years in the NBA. Ward currently serves as head football coach at a Texas high school. [...]

[...] Richt’s got a pretty good recruiting pitch for Nick [...]

steadybb

March 25th, 2010
9:06 am

Reggie Brown football poy, track all class long jumper 24′9 as a sophmore wow

ajc reader

March 25th, 2010
9:12 am

Earl Caruthers from Sandy Creek ‘98 was a good one, all-state basketball and football. Went on to
Morehouse College to play both.

Hootie Bookems

March 25th, 2010
9:24 am

Jesse Miller was a beast in football and baseball at Waco. His career didn’t pan out at UGA but he was an amazing high scholl athlete.

burrrr

March 25th, 2010
10:01 am

george lobard from lovett

david

March 25th, 2010
10:46 am

CWM

March 25th, 2010
11:06 am

keith montgomery … football baseball and track
ken swilling … football baseball basketball
pat swilling … football basball basketball

just a few from stephens county high toccoa ….

duke

March 25th, 2010
12:58 pm

What about willie gault?

duke

March 25th, 2010
1:01 pm

There was stud named rodney gant from monticello best athelete ever seen life cut short before we graduated.was getting offers as sophmore.

Crash Davis

March 25th, 2010
1:24 pm

Warren Newson from Newnan was offensive player of the year in football in the early 80’s and played in the majors for the White Sox for 7 years. Jerome Walton also was a football/baseball guy from Newnan, a reciever on our 81 North Georgia champion and Rookie of the Year in 89 with the Cubs.

Todd Holcomb

March 25th, 2010
1:35 pm

Charlie Dudish of Avondale was the state’s No. 1 recruit in football and a second-round pick in the MLB draft out of high school in 1967-68.

I’d put Gordon Beckham ahead of Harpring because Beckham was a better QB than Harpring. Marquis Grissom was an outstanding QB at Lakeshore.

Other baseball/football types – Donovan Tate, Quincy Carter, George Lombard, Jeff Pyburn.

Going strictly on high school career, I think Al Pinkins is tough to beat. And Kinnebrew.

Todd Holcomb

March 25th, 2010
1:46 pm

I’ll also add that Nick Marshall is not necessarily the best two-sport athlete in Georgia even now. Or even the bestbest football-basketball player. I might take Jay Rome of Valdosta.

Mr Me

March 25th, 2010
2:57 pm

Not alot of people got to see DJ Shockley play basketball but I played against hime while he was at North Clayton and dude could play D-1 basketball too. He also had A. Rice who played ball for Memphis so needless to say it was a fun game–Not to brag but we beat em. Could throw Harry and Toney Douglas in there too, Harry was almost as good as Toney in B-Ball too. But don’t think anyone can top Herschel Walker as all time best multi-sport athlete.

Hyponic

March 25th, 2010
3:03 pm

Alfred Jenkins from Hogansville and later MOrris Brown. I think he had something like 14 letters at MOrris Brown. Played professionally with the Falcons. He was incredible in both basketball and football for Hogansville

3DawgKnight

March 25th, 2010
3:03 pm

‘FROM PREVIOUS BLOG’:

To: ‘State Champs’ & ‘W/E’
(I hope I didn’t mess up your handles)
1st – The school does not investigate so money does not have to be allocated therefore none wasted. GHSA [the reason they exist] is charged
with the duty of investigating each violation. If there are rules, then one must play by them. Otherwise referees would not be needed for games & even more money could be saved. *[chaos] Gate revenue from the tournament goes to the GHSA. Yes, they should do their job.
Otherwise, *chaos.
It was stated: “My parents divorced” – paraphrase – owned property,
two seperate districts, could have gone either place, etc., It’s not that simple as there are guardian specifics, transfer guideline specifics, which must be adhered to as well. One can’t just jump back & forth from parent to parent.
Also, property does noes not matter, ‘residence’, matters. One must actually live, where he says he lives & with his/her guardian.
Once again GHSA is funded to oversee/govern these very matters.
*No cost to scools or taxpayers!

No, any student cannot just transfer as pleases. In most cases,
a stuent wishing to transfr within a system:
*[generally for a curriculum not offered by attending school]
*example: school-a is col. prep…school-b is vocational.
*student wants to take welding. student may transfer.
*catch – transferring student is reqired to pay tuition.
SORRY – but I felt it had to be said. All I said is fact.

‘COMMON SENSE’ played HS basketball against David Moss.
1st time I saw him jump I saw his shoe strings, real close.
I hate to admit I was supposed to be guarding him.
He was a soph. & I was a sr., so I must say;
“I guarded the heck out of both ‘Chuck’ & ‘Taylor’ that night.”

3DawgKnight

March 25th, 2010
3:06 pm

Reposted, just in case it got lost in all that other mess above!

COMMON SENSE’ played HS basketball against David Moss.
1st time I saw him jump I saw his shoe strings, real close.
I hate to admit I was supposed to be guarding him.
He was a soph. & I was a sr., so I must say;
“I guarded the heck out of both ‘Chuck’ & ‘Taylor’ that night

Max

March 25th, 2010
4:18 pm

Jackie Robinson was born in Cairo Georgia, and lettered n four sports in HS. Granted he moved away when he was ONE! But still…