For the list of the other 2014 Gatorade State Football POYs, click here
THE WINNER: A.J. Gray
School: Washington County (Sandersville, Ga.)
Weight: 208 pounds
Athletic achievement: He has led the Golden Hawks to a 13-0 record and a berth in the Class AAA state semifinals, scheduled for Dec. 5. Gray threw for 1,563 yards and 21 touchdowns against five interceptions on 77-of-147 passing through 13 games. The returning Class AAA Offensive Player of the Year as named by the Georgia Sports Writers Association, Gray also rushed for 1,927 yards and 34 touchdowns on 156 carries. As a defensive back, Gray amassed 57 tackles and nine interceptions, returning four for touchdowns as the anchor of a defense that allowed just 12.6 points per game.
Academic excellence: A basketball and baseball standout as well,
Exemplary character: Gray has maintained a 3.5 GPA. In addition to donating his time as a youth football and basketball instructor, he has volunteered as a member of his school’s student council, as part of a charitable road race and on behalf of Rotary International.
“He is an outstanding ambassador of the high school game right now,” said Lemuel Lackey, head coach of rival Augusta (Ga.) Laney. “The young man has shown that the student-athlete of today can possess the quality combination that every coach desires—both scholarly student and high-character, outstanding athlete. The way he carries himself on and off the field, I could only hope and pray as a coach that my son exemplifies these same characteristics while participating in the arena of high school athletics.”
THE FUTURE: Gray has verbally committed to Georgia Tech.