Several records were broken during the Tennessee state championships on Friday night — and there are still more games to come in the Volunteer State on Saturday.
Jalen Hurd of Beech (Hendersonville, Tenn.) finished his tremendous junior season by breaking the state record for rushing yards and points in a season on Friday, leading his team to a 56-35 win over Columbia in the Class 5A state championship. Hurd ran for 394 yards and seven touchdowns — both state records for a state championship game — on 34 carries. He finished 2012 with 3,357 yards, according to The Tennessean, "breaking the record of 3,082 set by Huntingdon’s Jacob Warbritton in a Class 1A loss to Gordonsville earlier in the day. Warbritton held the record for about seven hours."
There's a chance the record could be broken a third time in a day, as Whitehaven's Mark Dodson needs 381 yards in today's Class 6A championship to pass Hurd. (The same record being broken three times in a day? That'd have to be some kind of record.)
There were still other record-breaking Tennesseans on Friday: Davis Howell of Christian Academy of Knoxville set the national prep record for career receptions during his team's 48-14 win over Milan in the Class 3A final. With 15 catches Friday, he finished with 358 receptions in his career. According to MaxPreps, Howell's quarterback, Charlie High, broke the state single-season passing record on Friday night, as well, as Christian Academy won its second consecutive state title.
Henry breaks more records in final game
We've spilled no shortage of ink on Derrick Henry of Yulee (Fla.) this year, and for good reason. The Alabama commit set the national prep record for rushing yards in a career during his other-wordly senior season, and Friday night he put one more feather in his cap, breaking Travis Henry's state single-season mark by finishing with 4,260 rushing yards. Unfortunately, the feat came as Yulee fell to perennial power Bolles 45-35 in the Class 4A state semifinals. Henry did all he could in the contest reports The Florida Times-Union, carrying the ball 45 times for 336 yards and four TDs.
But there's a reason Bolles skipper Corky Rogers is the winningest coach in Florida history, with more than 400 wins and 11 state titles to his credit. Even with what at one point was considered an average senior class — by Bolles' lofty standards, anyway — the Bulldogs (12-1) keep finding ways to win. The team will go for title No. 12 under Rogers next week in a rematch against Booker T. Washington (Miami). Henry, meanwhile, finished his career with 12,124 yards and 153 touchdowns. Those marks are first and second, respectively, in Florida state history, and neck-and-neck with classmate Kelvin Taylor, who played five years of varsity football for Glades Day. Henry fell short of his primary goal of a state title, but his name — like Rogers' — is now forever etched in the record books.
Gatorade Players of the Year announced
Henry was named Florida's Gatorade Player of the Year this week, one of 51 winners (50 states plus D.C.) selected for the 28th annual edition of the award. While Henry's selection seems obvious, the Gatorade honor encompasses three "pillars" — athletic accomplishment, academic success and community service. Thus, some of the most productive players in the country this fall fell short of earning the title in their state. For the complete list of winners, including an archive of past recipients, click here.