If you ever watched MTV’s “Two-A-Days” high school football reality show, you know that Rush Propst is a quote machine.
When asked about his football team at Colquitt County High School by a reporter, Propst said — wait a minute — he had a question first: ”How the [heck] can you leave Xzavier Ward off the AJC Super 11?”
It was a fair question. He was talking about Colquitt’s man-child on the offensive line, the 6-foot-7, 255-pound senior who will probably be playing left tackle for some football team for, oh let’s say, the next decade. Ward has around 25 major-college scholarship offers, with UGA and Alabama as his long-time leaders.
“I get bombard daily by college coaches who want to know what Xzavier is thinking every second,” Propst said. “There’s probably several guys on that [Super 11 list] that don’t fall into that category [of intense recruiting].
“It has to be a pure lack of intelligence to not put Xzavier on the Super 11.
“We moved Xzavier from right tackle to left tackle this year. Barring injury, he’s going to playing that position for a long, long time. I’ve had 5-6 of my former players go onto the NFL [ including New England Patriots WR Chad Jackson and Falcons back-up QB John Parker Wilson] … and Xzavier is as good or better than all of those guys as far as NFL potential.
“I just think it’s ridiculous and I don’t mind be quoted on all of that.”
Thanks coach, we have given you the floor to state your case. By the way, if it’s OK to ask a question, what’s the latest with Ward and colleges?
“It’s Alabama or Georgia at No. 1, depending on which of them talked to him last. Then it’s probably Auburn at No. 3, Florida at No. 4, and then South Carolina and North Carolina. If I had to break it down today, that would be how I am seeing it.”
Now it’s our turn. Ward, the basketball-turned-football player, is certainly one of Georgia’s best high school football players and prospects. He will be a third-year starter for a team that is one of the top contenders for the state championship in Georgia’s’ largest classification. Ward already looks like an NFL lineman in pads, and moves with the agility and athleticism of a high school wide receiver. You can definitely tell he played basketball with his quick feet and hands. And I’ll repeat what I said here that Ward “is the best offensive tackle that I’ve observed in this state since Booker T. Washington’s Duke Robinson, who earned All-America honors at Oklahoma last year.”
With that said, the AJC Super 11 is our best effort to identify the state’s best 11 football players not prospects. It’s always an imperfect process because Georgia is overloaded with talent, with 200 players per year signing major-college football scholarships. Ward was considered by our selection committee. He was deserving, as were several others left off the list. Again, we did our best, based on our committee’s evaluations, along with feedback from high school and college coaches. We appreciate Propst’s passion, as we do with other coaches and football fans who have debated our final selections. Here they are again:
Now it’s YOUR turn. What is your opinion of the AJC’s Super 11? Are those the best 11 football players in this great state? Who would be on YOUR Super 11? Who did we miss? How do they compare to some of the players on our list? Please state your case below. We at the AJC love talkin’ football. Let’s hear it …
[Editor's Note: Any inappropriate remarks will not be tolerated]