Written by Corbett Smith
SportsDayHS 2011 Defensive Player of the Year: Ryan's Mario Edwards didn't rest on laurels
Edwards considered the best defensive end in senior class
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Mario Edwards Jr., Denton Ryan, Sr.
After Mario Edwards Jr. won The Associated Press Class 4A defensive player of the year award last season as a junior, he wasn’t shy about his intentions going into his senior year.
“I want to be the top guy in the nation,” he said.
Several recruiting services think he’s met his goal. The 6-4, 285-pound All-State team member is considered the top-rated defensive end in the country.
Factoring his size, speed and strength with his desire and the work ethic instilled by his father, former NFL cornerback and current Ryan assistant Mario Edwards Sr., it’s easy to see why colleges are lining up at Edwards’ door.
Long committed to his father’s alma mater, Florida State, Edwards has caused ripples by scheduling last-minute visits to Oklahoma, LSU and Texas before national signing day Feb. 1.
A transfer from Prosper after his sophomore season, Edwards went 27-2 at Ryan.
Position: Defensive end
Ht., Wt.: 6-4, 285
About Edwards: On a defense with three other players who have committed to FBS schools in the front seven, Edwards had 72 tackles, 32 for loss, with 11 sacks, six forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two safeties.
What’s next? Edwards has professed that he’s still committed to Florida State, but he’s looking at Texas, LSU and Oklahoma
Recent winners: Year, player, school
2004: DeMarcus Granger, DT, Kimball
2005: Sergio Kindle, LB, Woodrow Wilson
2006: Youri Yenga, DE, Euless Trinity
2007: Spencer Reeves, LB, Skyline
2008: Nikita Whitlock, NG, Wylie
2009: Jackson Jeffcoat, DE, Plano West
2010: Tanner Rice, DE, Coppell