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December 11, 2008
It's Like Balance
EDGYTIM/Rivals.com is proud to announce that East St. Louis four star ranked senior Terry Hawthorne (Illinois verbal commit) has been named as the 2008 Defensive Player of the Year in Illinois.
It's Like Balance.
That was the answer I received when I posed the question to Terry Hawthorne right after his Flyers captured the 2008 Class 7A state title, the Flyers first state title since 1991. It was a pretty tough question I threw at Hawthorne, which position do you like playing the most, offense or defense?
It took a minute or so for Hawthorne to answer, but then he came up with a pretty logical explanation. Hawthorne likes the ball in his hands on offense, but that he also likes to hit people and make plays on defense.
It took me awhile to buy into this whole Terry Hawthorne, four star ranked wide receiver to be named as the 2008 Defensive Player of the Year deal. How in the heck could I name this kid on defense when he didn't even make my All State team on defense? Sure, I could of easily moved Hawthorne to defense, but then that would of been a slight to his amazing ball skills and big play making abilities on offense.
Yet when you looked harder at the plays that Terry Hawthorne made defensively in the Flyers 27-20 Class 7A state semifinal win over a scrappy Glenbard West squad, your beginning to understand just how big of an impact player Terry Hawthorn was in 2008. If Terry Hawthorne isn't on the field for the Flyers defense in that game against the Hilltoppers, I truly believe that the Flyers wouldn't of been in Champaign for the state finals.
Then again, when over the past three years hasn't Terry Hawthorne not made big plays?
I went back to my scouting report that I gave both Orange and Blue publisher Jeff Johnson and Rivals.com National Recruiting Editor Jeremy Crabtree on Terry Hawthorne from his 2008 junior season.
"(Kraig) Appleton is the type of kid athletically you just don't see very often in Illinois playing football. He's a legit 6-foot-4, 200 pounds and has tremendous physical tools. The scouting/combine guys will drool all over this kid. The best overall player for ESTL might be the Hawthorne kid. While he's not as big or as physically built as Appleton, Hawthorne just makes big plays when they are required. Hawthorne will also be a highly sought after prospect from the Class of 2009 and don't sleep on him."
I guess the sun will shine on this old dog's butt every once in awhile :)
Stats you ask? Terry Hawthorne made an amazing 8 interceptions in 2008, with 7 of those picks coming in the post-season. Tackles? Hawthorne posted 118 total tackles, with 74 solo and 44 assists.
In the end, how could I not pick Terry Hawthorne?
It will be interesting to see just how long it takes Terry Hawthorne to see the field starting next fall for the Fighting Illini.
Here's a tip for Ron Zook. Hey Ron, this kid Likes That Balance just in case you need some help on either side of the ball.
Next fall we'll get to see Terry Hawthorne playing on Saturday's. At this rate, I'm almost expecting to see him playing on Sunday's.