Once upon a time, Isaiah Crowell — an AJC Super 11 selection who is considered by some to be the nation’s No. 1 college football prospect at tailback — had planned to announce his highly-anticipated college decision after Carver-Columbus won Friday’s state championship at the Georgia Dome.
At the time, some may have interpreted Crowell’s confidence in his team as, well, overconfidence. Don’t count me among them. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with thinking your high school football team will win it all. Actually, there may be something wrong if you don’t think your team will have a chance at winning it all.
Most players — whether they say it publicly or keep it to themselves privately — feel that way about their team anyways. Crowell’s comments of confidence are very well known … not for cockiness, as much as reporters constantly prodding him about when he wished to reveal his college choice — Alabama or Georgia, among others. Everybody wants to know the future college for the “next Marcus Lattimore,” who has proven yet again that one great player can change a program’s fortunes instantly.
Back to Crowell: We know the rest of the story. There won’t be any Friday announcement at the Georgia Dome because No. 1 Carver suffered a stunning 27-14 upset to Calhoun in last weekend’s Class AA semifinals. However, Crowell had already told Scout’s Chad Simmons a few days before last week’s game that he was delaying his decision until signing day.
How did Crowell do in the game? He rushed for 94 yards on 20 carries. Calhoun coach Hal Lamb told the Chattanooga Times: “We did an unbelievable job on him. We kept hitting him and hitting him. That was our goal and he got frustrated. Our kids never quit and I truly believe in our football team. A lot of people didn’t expect us to win tonight. I’m so proud of our football team. We as a football team believed we could win.”
Crowell was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct for taunting the Calhoun crowd following a 50-yard TD run that was called back due to a penalty. He was also observed yelling and complaining on the field and on the sideline throughout the game, according to the AJC’s Chip Towers. “Calhoun did a great job on defense and tackled really well Friday night. They didn’t allow any of the explosive runs he is accustomed to,” Carver coach Dell McGee told the AJC on Monday. “Isaiah’s a very competitive person and he wears his emotions on the outside sometimes. He’s got to mature in that regard because it’s definitely going to get tougher on the next level.”
Now it’s YOUR turn: What are your thoughts on Crowell? And what do you think about the Carver loss? I have to admit I never saw that coming. I thought Carver, with its boatload of blue-chip prospects, might be the state’s best overall team (or most talented), regardless of classification.