POY Watch: Watson remains No. 1 as he nears passing yardage record

Deshaun Waton, the Gainesville quarterback who has moved within 17 passing yards of a career state record, continues to lead GHSF Daily’s Player of the Year Watch entering the final weekend of the season.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s POY Award has gone to players who have made it to the state finals for 22 of the past 26 seasons.

We do have one player included whose season has ended, partly in tribute to his record-setting performance. That is Wilcox County WR Jonathan Howard, who set a receiving record last week in his team’s semifinal loss to Emanuel County Institute.

1. QB Deshaun Watson, Gainesville: Watson rushed for 94 yards and a touchdown and passed for 227 yards and a touchdown in a 28-14 victory over Whitewater. Watson needs 17 yards to break the state record for career passing yards. He holds the career record for TD passes with 105. For the season, Watson is 278-of-399 passing for 3,707 yards and 47 touchdowns with eight interceptions. He has rushed for 1,356 yards and 22 touchdowns on 208 carries (6.5 ypc). A junior, Watson has committed to Clemson.

2. RB Alvin Kamara, Norcross: Kamara rushed for 161 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries and caught a 65-yard TD pass in a 41-27 victory over Colquitt County. For the season, Kamara has rushed for 2,120 yards and 25 touchdowns on 269 carries (7.9 ypc). Kamara, the top-rated running back in Georgia according to some, is uncommitted.

3. RB Travis Custis, Lovejoy: Custis rushed for 292 yards and scored five touchdowns in a 63-42 victory over North Cobb. For the season, Custis has rushed for 2,058 yards and scored 35 touchdowns on 250 carries (8.2 ypc). He also has 26 receptions for 288 yards and two touchdowns. He has committed to Georgia Tech.

4. QB Taylor Lamb, Calhoun: Lamb was 10-of-14 passing for 64 yards and rushed for 83 yards in a 21-14 victory over Lamar County. For the season, Lamb is 257-of-373 passing for 3,230 yards and 34 touchdowns with five interceptions for the No. 1-ranked team in Class AA. He has scored 12 touchdowns while rushing for 423 yards. Lamb has committed to South Alabama.

5. WB/DB Vonn Bell, Ridgeland: Bell caught a 57-yard TD pass and had five tackles in a 28-27 victory over Marist. For the season, Bell has rushed for 1,039 yards on 91 carries (11.4 ypc), caught 18 passes for 627 yards (34.8 ypc) and scored 21 touchdowns. On defense, he has 136 tackles and three interceptions. A preseason AJC Super 11 pick, Bell is uncommitted.

6. RB Darrell Bridges, Ridgeland: Bridges rushed for 164 yards, scored on an 89-yard run and threw two TD passes – one the game-winner in the final minute – in the 28-27 victory over Marist. Bridges has rushed for 2,301 yards and scored 39 touchdowns on 256 carries (9.0 ypc). He is 9-for-18 passing for 307 yards and four touchdowns. He has four catches for 85 yards. Bridges is uncommitted.

7. DT Montravius Adams, Dooly County: Adams had two sacks, 10 tackles and 14 QB hurries in a 10-7 victory over Lincoln County in the semifinals. For the season, Adams has 7.5 sacks, 43 hurries, 92 tackles and four forced fumbles. Adams is the top uncommitted recruit in the state and is ranked the No. 1 defensive tackle prospect in the nation by Scout.com.

8. QB Bryant Shirreffs, Jefferson: Shirreffs rushed for 128 yards and two touchdowns and passed for 141 yards and two touchdowns in a 42-14 victory over Greater Atlanta Christian. For the season, Shirreffs is 160-of-249 passing for 2,181 yards and 17 touchdowns with six interceptions. He has rushed for 1,233 yards and 18 touchdowns on 154 carries. Shirreffs has Ivy League offers. He is uncommitted.

9. RB/LB Xavier Tobler, Ware County: Tobler rushed for 152 yards and scored all three touchdowns in Ware County’s 24-17 victory over Northside of Warner Robins. For the season, Tobler, a two-way starter, has rushed for 1,648 yards, scored 28 touchdowns and made 110 tackles. Tobler has committed to Georgia Southern.

10. WR Jonathan Howard, Wilcox County: Howard set a state record for receptions in a season after his 16-catch, 209-yard performance in a 38-27 loss to Emanuel County Institute. For the season, Howard finished with 115 receptions – believed to be the most in state history – for 1,630 yards and 17 touchdowns. His 1,630 yards fell 25 yards short of the state record set in 2010 by Demarcus Robinson of M.L. King.

Produced by Georgia High School Football Daily, a free e-mail newsletter. To join the mailing list, click here.

11 comments Add your comment


December 12th, 2012
8:53 am

My pick would be Vonn Bell or Xavier Tobler. Look at their stats as two-way starters!!

Todd Holcomb

December 12th, 2012
10:09 am

Yep –

Custis ran for 292, and Watson is committed to Clemson.


Todd Holcomb

December 12th, 2012
10:10 am

Good points, Gridiron, on the two-way starters. That’s not easy to do in AAAA and above.


December 12th, 2012
11:27 am

Xavier Tobler IS the real deal !! He can do it all. He should be highly recruited.


December 12th, 2012
12:13 pm

Bryant Shirreffs!! Class Act!!

HS Football Fasn

December 12th, 2012
12:53 pm

Tyren Jones deserves mention. Although injured in first series of ninth game, he finished with 1682 yards and 16 touchdowns in 8 games. He’s back at full strength and is going to be a great college runner for somebody. I hope he considers his options closely and lands in the best situation. He will be playing after many of these boys have hung it up.


December 12th, 2012
2:56 pm

Wasn’t Robert Nkemdiche the Player of the Year last year? Has he fallen out of the Top 10 for real?

Titletown USA

December 12th, 2012
7:34 pm

Tobler is a great candidate, but I think it has to go the Watson kid….Mark Richt should be ashamed for not heavily recruiting this kid.

Just a fan

December 12th, 2012
11:01 pm

Nkemdiche showed zero improvement this year. Great player, but played at same level. Everyone else got better. He will be a serviceable player in college, but not a Clowney type player. And certainly won’t get any better at an Ole Miss or Clemson. Then again the entire Grayson team underachieved this year.

My dad is a tv repairman. I can fix it.

December 13th, 2012
12:51 am

Ummmhmmmm. Watson


December 13th, 2012
4:52 pm

Whats the criteria ?