By BRIAN WOODSON
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
Ian Mann broke seven school records, Ty Hall shattered a pair of marks that had belonged to Pittsburgh Steelers’ tight end Heath Miller, and all schools in the Daily Telegraph coverage area had clubs loaded with talent.
Here are the best of the best.
Call it the All-Four Seasons Country Football Team, which includes 33 players each on a first and second team, and three honorable mention selections from all 20 schools.
The more players the better so a few positions were added to allow more players to be honored. It is never easy to select teams like this, but this is simply one person’s opinion, taking into account all-state, all-region and all-district teams, while trying to have a mixture of players from all 20 schools in the coverage area.
In fact, at least one player from all 20 teams is included on at least the first or second team.
Let the debate begin? Never are teams like this released where opinions differ, but here is a look at the best high school football players in the area in 2012.
Player of Year: Ian Mann, Giles. Mann broke seven school records while earning the Pocahontas Coal Association/Bluefield Daily Telegraph Player of the Year honors. Mann set single season marks for rushing yards (2,328) and touchdowns (37). He averaged 194.0 yards per game and finished 224 points. Mann was chosen as player of the year in Region C and in the Three Rivers District.
Giles finished 10-2, capturing the Three Rivers District title, and reaching the second round of the Division 2, West Section postseason.
Coach of Year: Doug Hubbard, Honaker. Hubbard guided the Tigers to a 13-2 record, including an appearance in the Group A, Division 3 state championship game, dropping a 17-10 decision to George Wythe. Hubbard, in his 30th season as his alma mater, led Honaker to the Black Diamond District championship, and to the state finals for a second time.
QB—Ty Hall, Honaker. Hall led the Tigers to the Group A, Division 1 state championship game for the first time since Miller led Honaker to the same spot in 2000. Hall broke a pair of single season records held by Miller, including passing yards (2,048) and touchdowns (27). He was chosen as the player of the year in the Black Diamond District, and was also a first team All-West Section, Division 1 honoree.
RB—Montel Leggett, Bluefield. Leggett ran for 1,378 yards and 19 touchdowns, averaging 10.4 yards per rush attempt. He also caught four passes for 103 yards and another score, finishing with 120 points on the season. Leggett, who is just a junior, accumulated 1,521 all-purpose yards. Leggett was an All-Class AA first team honoree.
RB—Ian Mann, Giles. See above. It’s worth reading twice.
RB—Colton Staten, Richlands. Also just a junior, Staten had to fill the departed shoes of Devon Johnson and did it admirably, dashing for 1,563 yards and 12 touchdowns, averaging 7.9 yards per carry. Staten was a first team All-Southwest District selection, and a second team All-Region IV honoree.
FB—Jacob McReynolds, Tazewell. Another junior, McReynolds was a key cog in the Bulldogs’ winning two games and snapping an 18-game losing streak. McReynolds actually scored all 27 points in Tazewell’s 27-26 win over Carroll County. He ran for 745 yards and eight touchdowns, caught four passes for 125 yards, and 70 tackles, including 35 of the solo variety, including four stops for loss and two forced fumbles. He also did the kicking duties for the Bulldogs.
WR—A.J. Johnson, Richlands. Johnson was a threat each time he caught the ball, finishing with 53 receptions for 992 yards and 14 touchdowns, averaging 18.7 yards per catch. He also ran the ball nine times for 86 yards and two scores, and was a standout in the secondary, recording 36 tackles, 17 pass breakups, five interceptions, two tackles for loss and a forced fumble. Johnson was a first team All-SWD and All-Region IV selection. He also a second team All-Group AA honoree by Virginia Preps.
WR—Jalen Jordan, Tazewell. Jordan was instrumental in improved play from the Bulldogs, snagging 38 receptions for 880 yards, averaging 23.2 yards per catch. He also had eight touchdowns. Jordan also recorded 50 tackles on defense, and broke up seven passes. He was a first team All-SWD selection and second team All-Region IV honoree.
WR—Lamont Lee, Princeton. Much like Johnson and Jordan, Lee was a threat every time he touched the ball with his blazing speed and ability make the catch. Lee was a Mountain State Athletic Conference (MSAC) second team honoree and an All-Class AAA honorable mention selection.
TE—Maurce Brown, Mount View. One of the top athletes in the area, Brown was a key reason why the Golden Knights were so much better, breaking a 31-game losing skid and finishing the season with three wins. Brown was an honorable mention selection to the All-Class AA team.
C—Chase Asbury, Graham. Asbury was the key to an offensive line that produced a 1,000-yard rusher for the first time in five years. Asbury was an All-Mountain Empire District first team selection, and second team All-Region C honoree.
OL—Tyler Blankenship, River View. Jordan Wilson doesn’t run for 1,225 yards and 13 scores without the help of his friends on the interior line, and Blankenship was the leader. Just a junior, Blankenship was an honorable mention selection to the All-Class AA team.
OL—Kearsley Dillon, Giles. Mann was quick to credit his offensive line in the single wing scheme for his success, and he was right. Called by Giles coach Jeff Williams ‘one of the strongest players he had ever coached’, Dillon was selected as the Three Rivers District offensive lineman of the year and first team honoree by coaches in Region C.
OL—Jared Farmer, Giles. It wasn’t just Dillon. The 6-foot-2 Farmer was also dominant on what was the best offensive line in the region. Farmer earned first team honors from Region C and the Three Rivers District.
OL—Corey Harsanyi, Princeton. Another junior, the 305-pound Harsanyi was a force for the Tigers, opening holes for speedsters like Tahj Sho-Johnson and Lee. He was a second All-MSAC selection.
OL—Chander Miller, Honaker. Also a junior, Miller was chosen as the Black Diamond District offensive lineman of the year. Miller was key reason why the Tigers won 13 games, including four in the postseason before falling short against George Wythe in the final game. Miller was also selected as a first team honoree on the All-Division 1-West Section team.
UTIL—Spencer Sheets, Graham. The heart and soul of the G-Men, Sheets used his quickness, versalitity and smarts to guide Graham to a 7-4 record. He was a multi-purpose quarterback, throwing for 1,017 yards and seven touchdowns, and ran for 755 yards and another 11 scores. He also lined up at receiver and caught eight passes for 53 yards and another touchdown. Sheets also played defense, collecting 15 tackles, three tackles for loss and two interceptions, one of which he returned for six more points.
K—Justin Mariotti, Bluefield. It was a tough start to the season for Mariotti when his potential game-winning field goal against Graham missed its mark, but he had a solid season, making the game-winner against Oak Hill. Mariotti was a second team All-Class AA selection.
KR—Jeffery Bowen, Haysi. A playmaker for the Tigers, Bowen had several huge games this season, including 332 yards and six touchdowns against Phelps, Ky. Haysi finished 8-4 on the season, led by Bowen, who ran for 1,270 yards and 24 touchdowns. The junior was tabbed as the BDD’s offensive player of the year. He was an honorable mention selection on the All-Division 1-West Section team as a running back and kick return specialist.
DE—Todd McGlothlin, Richlands. The 6-foot-4 McGlothlin was a force for the Blue Tornado, earning Southwest District defensive player of the year. He was also chosen as an All-Region IV first team selection, and was recently tabbed as an All-Group AA first team honoree by Virginia Preps. McGlothlin recorded 80 tackles, including 17 for loss, 14 sacks and three forced fumbles. He also caught 30 passes for 445 yards and six touchdowns.
DL—Michael Thompson, Graham. Thompson clogged up the middle of the interior line while making 33 tackles, including 12 for loss, along with three sacks and two fumble recoveries. He was a first team selection on defense by the MED and Region C. He also contributed 380 yards and a touchdown on the ground and caught six passes for another 96 yards.
DL—Deandre Williams, Honaker. Williams keyed the stingy Honaker defense that advanced to the Division 1 state championship game. Williams was the Black Diamond District’s defensive lineman of the year. Williams was a first team honoree on the Division 1-West Section team.
DL—Mikey Wright, Tazewell. Wright recorded 56 tackles for Tazewell, including 18 for loss, three sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery for the improved Bulldogs. He was chosen as a first team All-SWD selection and a first-team honoree by Region IV.
DE—Brandon Thomas, River View. An All-Class AA first team selection, Thomas had a big season for the Raiders. He had 52 tackles, including 44 solo stops, along with nine sacks and eight interceptions, an amazing number for a senior who normally lined up on the defensive line.
LB—Hunter Cook, Graham. Cook was where the ball was for the G-Men, collecting 125 tackles, including 53 solo stops. He also had eight tackles for loss, two sacks, four pass breakups, an interception and a forced fumble. Another junior who will be back for another season, Cook earned first team All-MED honors and a second teamer by Region C.
LB—Corey Coppola, Bluefield. Coppola’s season debut was delayed by the WVSSAC, but the sophomore — the only sophomore on the first team — made an instant impact for the Beavers. He made plays all over the field, adding 150 yards and two touchdowns on the ground, and another four receptions for 156 yards and three more scores. He was chosen for the All-Class AA team as a special honorable mention selection.
LB—Frank Taylor, Richlands. Taylor stepped into the defensive shoes left by Devon Johnson and did just fine, recording 113 tackles, including 72 solo stops, along with 16 tackles for loss, six sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. Another junior, Taylor was an all-SWD first team selection and second team honoree by Region IV.
LB—Guye Turner, Tazewell. Turner was the ‘Guye’ for the Bulldogs, leading Tazewell’s improved squad with 142 stops, including 94 solo efforts. He also had one sack and one forced fumble. Turner was a first-team All-SWD honoree, and chosen as a Region IV first team selection.
DB—D.J. Edwards, Bluefield. The Beavers’ quarterback was also a standout on defense. He was chosen as an All-Class AA first team selection as a defensive back. Another junior, Edwards was solid on offense as well, running for 516 yards and 11 touchdowns and threw for 619 yards and 10 more scores.
DB—Cody Hatfield, Graham. Hatfield did it all for the G-Men. He had 121 tackles, including 57 solo stops on defense, along with six pass breakups, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and a tackle for loss. Offensively, Hatfield ran for 1,083 yards and 10 touchdowns and also caught 17 passes for 335 yards and two more scores. He finished with 1,624 all-purpose yards, and also contributed four pancake blocks. He was a first team All-MED first team defensive back and second team running back. Hatfield was also selected by Region C as a second team selection on defense.
DB—Garrett Lee, Giles. One of the state’s top punters — when he had the opportunity to punt in Giles’ high-scoring single wing attack — Lee led the Spartans on defense, earning Three Rivers District defensive player of the year. He was also a first team honoree on the All-Region C squad.
DB—T.J. Smith, Summers County. The Bobcats had one of their best seasons in years, and much of the thanks goes to Smith. A quarterback and defensive back for Summers County, Smith led the Bobcats to a 7-4 record and their first playoff appearance this century. Not had for a team that was 0-10 just two years ago. Smith was a special honorable mention selection to the All-Class AA team.
UTIL—Jason Grose, Montcalm. Grose led the Generals to the school’s second winning season in program history. Grose paced the Montcalm defense with 85 tackles. He also ran for 1,231 yards and 17 touchdowns, averaging 10.4 yards per carry. Grose was an All-Class AA honorable mention selection.
P—Wayne Mutter, Grundy. One of the top specialist in the region for three years, Mutter finished the season with a 43-yard average per punt, including three that traveled more than 60 yards. Mutter was also 3-of-5 on field goals, with his only unsuccessful kicks being from 45-plus yards. He was 21-of-24 on extra points, with the misses all being blocked. He was also able to help the Golden Wave with field position, with 57 percent of his kicks resulting in touchbacks and 100 percent were returned from inside the 5. He was a first team selection as a kicker and punter from the BDD.
—Contact Brian Woodson
All-Four Seasons Country Football Team
QB—Ty Hall, Honaker, 5’10, Sr.
RB—Montel Leggett, Bluefield, 5’7, Jr.
RB—Ian Mann, Giles, 6’0, Sr.
RB—Colton Staten, Richlands, 5’9, Jr.
FB—Jacob McReynolds, Tazewell, 5’9, Jr.
WR—A.J. Johnson, Richlands, 5’11, Sr.
WR—Jalen Jordan, Tazewell 6’1, Sr.
WR—Lamont Lee, Princeton, 5’11, Sr.
TE—Maurice Brown, Mount View, 6’4, Sr.
C—Chase Asbury, Graham, 5’11, Jr.
OL—Tyler Blankenship, River View, 5’9, Jr.
OL—Kearsley Dillon, Giles, 5’11, Sr.
OL—Jared Farmer, Giles, 6’2, Sr.
OL— Corey Harsanyi, Princeton, 6’2, Jr.
OL—Chandler Miller, Honaker, 6’1, Jr.
UTIL—Spencer Sheets, Graham, 5’8, Sr.
K—Justin Mariotti, Bluefield, 5’11, Sr.
KR—Jeffrey Bowen, Haysi, 5’10, Jr.
DE—Todd McGlothlin, Richlands, 6’4, Sr.
DL—Michael Thompson, Graham, 5’9, Sr.
DL—Deandre Williams Honaker, 6’1, Sr.
DL—Mikey Wright, Tazewell, 5’6, Sr.
DE—Brandon Thomas, River View, 6’3, Sr.
LB—Hunter Cook, Graham, 5’11, Jr.
LB—Corey Coppola, Bluefield, 6’3, So.
LB—Frank Taylor, Richlands, 6’0, Jr.
LB—Guye Turner, Tazewell, 6’1, Sr.
DB—D.J. Edwards, Bluefield, 6’1, Jr.
DB—Cody Hatfield, Graham, 6’0, Sr.
DB—Garrett Lee, Giles, 6’1, Sr.
DB—T.J. Smith, Summers County, 5’10, Jr.
UTIL—Jason Grose, Montcalm, 6’0, Jr.
P—Wayne Mutter, Grundy, 6’0, Sr.
Player of Year: Ian Mann, Giles
Coach of Year: Doug Hubbard, Honaker
QB—Gray Baker, Richlands, 6’2, Jr.
RB—Jacob Summe, Wyoming East, 6’0, Jr.
RB—Nick Travis, Grundy, 5’10, Sr.
RB—Jordan Wilson, River View. 5’6, So.
FB—Eric Johnson, Richlands, 6’1, Sr.
WR—Charlie Benfield, Graham, 6’2, Jr.
WR—Isaiah Brown, Summers County, 5’9, Jr.
WR—Chandler Burton, Narrows, 6’2, Jr.
TE—Mark Large, Graham, 6’1, Jr.
C—Nick Goad, Tazewell, 6’0, Sr.
OL—Miller Collins, Giles 6’0, Sr.
OL—John Griffith, Bland County, 6’1, Sr.
OL—Corbin King, Richlands, 6’2, Sr.
OL—Tyler Myers, Bluefield, 5’11, Sr.
OL—Dakota Stevens, Honaker, 5’9, Jr.
UTIL—Shannon Adams, Twin Valley, 5’8, Jr.
K—McKenzie Phillips, Honaker, 5’8, Jr.
KR—Marcus Bailey, Montcalm, 5’9, Sr.
DE—Cody McCann, Tazewell, 6’2, Sr.
DL—Payton Ball, Honaker, 6’3, Sr.
DL— Sam Lawson, Richlands, 6’2, Sr.
DL— Cody Yates, Haysi, 6’1, Sr.
DE—Cody Rhodes, Giles, 6’3, Jr.
LB—Michael Horton, Richlands, 6’3, Sr.
LB—Greg Stacy, Hurley, 5’9, Jr.
LB—E.T. Weiss, James Monroe, 5’11, Sr.
LB—Nick Wood, Princeton, 5’9, Jr.
DB—Johnny David, Bluefield, 5’11, Sr.
DB—Micah Deskins, James Monroe, 5’10, Sr.
DB—Jordan Hess, Honaker 6’s, Sr.
DB—Rodney Perdue, Narrows, 5’11, Jr.
UTIL—Hunter Moses, PikeView, 5’9, Jr.
P—Tyler Evans, Narrows, 5’10, Sr.
*All 20 area teams have at least one player on the first or second team
• • •
(Three players per team)
Bland County: Aaron Rose, Dylan Walker, Dakota Wright
Bluefield: D.J. Green, Danny Miller, D.J. Stewart
Giles: Brad Lipes, Chad Randel, Brett Whitlow
Graham: Daelan Caffee, Jacob Evans, Brennan Wheeler
Grundy: Daniel Ellis, Daniel Honaker, Trey Smith
Haysi: Heath Mullins, Tanner O’Quinn, Tristan Yates
Honaker: Joshua Dye, Randy Horton, Jon Ritchie
Hurley: Dillion Bailey, Austin Slone, Steven Stacy
James Monroe: Reed McNeer, Hunter Morgan, John Mustain
Montcalm: Charles Myers, Aaron Presley, Dustin Williams
Mount View: LaqQuell Martin, Chris Muncy, Teddy Hazzard
Narrows: Kelly Dent, Trevor Hart, Danny Stevers
PikeView: Josh Cox, Logan McKinney, Tyler Ruble
Princeton: Brett Carroll, Corey Mann, Tahj Sho-Johnson
Richlands: Ben Brown, Chase Ray, Jarred Sanders
River View: Joseph McClanahan, James Mills, Austin Walker
Summers County: Erik Lindsay, Dustin Smith, Buddy Vega
Tazewell: Garrett Jessee, Jessee Mountain, Carter Rasnick
Twin Valley: Dalton Harris, Corey Lineberry, Adam Quinley
Wyoming East: Chris Cecil, Christian Hedinger, Brandon Peck