MIAMI GARDENS – At a time when high school football coaches, athletes and parents are scrambling to grab the attention of colleges and universities to get some financial assistance to play football and get an education, Mario Smith and Tru Sports Foundation once again were doing their part in the process.
On Saturday evening at the Betty T. Ferguson Sports Complex – right down the street from Hard Rock Stadium – dreams were being realized in front of college coaches, media and recruiting services.
The 14th annual Public vs. Private Senior All-Star Game was held as Smith and his hard-working staff assembled players and coaches from Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Gainesville, Moore Haven, Pahokee, Connecticut, and Canada to get some last film and showcase their many skills.
The game has become something positive over the past 14 years as a last opportunity to turn heads and get the recognition they deserve for dedicating themselves to the sport and getting a high school degree.
As the Private squad prevailed, 24-6, under the direction of former Avant Garde head coach Tally “The Football Guru” Adams and his staff, the objective on this evening was for the players to get exposure, and those who took part, did just that.
For all the coaches who sent their players, it was a chance for them to put the final touches on a tremendous career. For those schools in south Florida who missed out on this chance to help their players, maybe you will let the seniors know in plenty of time.
Instead of ignoring another opportunity, high school coaches should embrace what Smith and his foundation continue to do. It was truly not a good look that schools and players from so many public and private schools chose to ignore this opportunity, and that is what stings the most.
Instead of focusing on what MVP’s Travis Delancy (Hialeah) and Daniel Audit (TRU Academy) did to help their team win the game, it's sad that we are paying more attention to the fact that so many missed the opportunity.
THE SERIES TIED
With the win, the Private team, sprinkled with some Public players on the roster, tied the series at 7-7.
Delancy and FIU signee proved to be quite a one, two combination as they hooked up for a pair of long touchdown passes.
Delancy lofted a beautiful deep ball to a streaking Nelson for a 50-yard score early in the second quarter to stake the Private squad to a 10-0 lead and followed that up with another perfectly thrown deep pass to Nelson for a 48-yard touchdown just 1:24 before halftime to make it 17-0 at the break.
Delancy, who finished the game with 225 passing yards on 12-of-18 passing and three touchdowns, playing for the Private team, was indeed impressive.
“It was a great feeling to just come out here tonight in my last high school football game and just have some fun,” Delancy told the Miami Herald. “A real blessing to be out here and just thank God for giving me the strength, ability and skill to come out here and do what I do best.”
With his Private team up 17-6, Delancy tossed his third touchdown pass of the game to Coconut Creek’s Djauny Dominic on the final play of the third quarter to complete the scoring. Delancy and Nelson were both part of the same Miramar team two years ago, and played on the same 7-on-7 team, so they had a lot of chemistry coming in.
While Delancy was getting it done on offense, TRU Prep defensive end Daniel Audit recorded sacks and another tackle-for-loss.
While Audit takes classes at the school, he is actually from Winnipeg, Manitoba in Canada. One of the many high school football players from the “Great White North” who compete in the Sunshine – with many attending Clearwater Academy International.
Audit is the son of former Pembroke Pines Charter, Central Michigan and Canadian Football League standout Kito Poblah, a Canadian-born player who continues to work in the Winnipeg community in public relations.
“I love blitzing and tonight was the first time I ever played these different positions on defense (defensive end and cornerback) so it was a lot of fun,” Audit pointed out to the Miami Herald. “They just threw me in there wherever I had to be, and I just tried to make some plays. That’s the way it usually happens in these all-star games, playing a few positions you don’t normally play.”
THE TALENT WAS CERTAINLY THERE
In addition to Delancy and Audit, there were some quality football players who took advantage of the opportunity – such as Homestead South Dade running back Demetrius “Meatball” Williams, who scored from five yards out to make it 17-6 following a blocked extra point with 3:21 left in the third. Williams provided head coach David Simmons and the Public team with most of its offensive finishing with 82 yards rushing.
Michael Abu-Akel, QB, Miami Killian
Jake Aller, P/K, Miami Northwestern
Aidan Aneston, WR/DB
Abdul Anthony, DL/OL, Westland Hialeah
Nashaughn Braynen, OLB, Lake Worth
Terrance Chambers, DT, Miami Booker T. Washington
Amir Collings, QB, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Jayden Dorcely, OL/DL, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Jeremiah Febus, Waterbury Crosby, Connecticut
Mikhail Forrester, WR, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Joseph Frazier, WR, Miami Dr. Krop
Julius Gunder, WR, Miami Dr. Krop
Kristian Hobbs, PK, Miami Central
Jerrell Jordan, DB, Homestead South Dade
Anthony Keen, OLB/SS, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Gary Kendrick, WR/CB, Miami Killian
Dedrick Lee, DE, Hialeah American
Jason Louis, OL, Gainesville PK Yonge
Immanuel Mahoney, RB, Hialeah American
Randy Maldonado, RB, Miami Springs
Jekellah Mitchell, RB/TE, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Kelvin Murray Jr., QB, Miami Edison
Armondo Pavoni, OL, Miami Beach
Kyle Santos, OL, Miami Beach
Julian Snead, WR/CB, Waterbury Career Academy, Connecticut
Daniel Somek, WR/OLB, Miami Beach
George Stubbs, Jr., DL/OL, Hialeah American
Jarkevis Symonnete, Athlete, Miami Carol City
Zamarrian Teel, OL/DL, Moore Haven
Malik Thezan, DE, Miramar
Javorous Thompson, OL/DL, Pahokee
Jeremiah Ulysses, WR/DB
Andrew Abu-Akel, PK, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Marek Anderson, S, Miami Gardens Monsignor Pace
Tykwon Anderson, OL, Miami True North Classical Academy
Jeremiah Belizaire, OLB/FB, North Miami Beach
Max Bissainthe, Athlete, Hollywood Avant Garde Academy
Breon Brown, SS/WR, Miami Gardens TRU Prep
Daymeon Casimir, LB, Miami Beach
Keon Daceus, DT, Coconut Creek
Amani Floyd, WR/CB, North Miami Beach
Tyler Gilham, S, Miami Gardens Monsignor Pace
Antonio Givens, WR/FS, Miami Gardens TRU Prep
Joe Holness, Athlete, Miami Coral Park
Karl Joseph, RB, North Miami Beach
Connor Lowe, OL/DL, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
Gerald Magus, DT, Coconut Creek
Mykel Marshall, DB, Davie Western
Gerald Modest, RB, Miami Booker T. Washington
Eli-Daniel Ogionwo, RB/LB, Miami Gardens TRU Prep
Theophilus Paulk, WR/FS, Hollywood Avant Garde Academy
Ashton Perkins, Athlete, Lauderdale Lakes Boyd Anderson
Jonathan Pierre, LB/DL, North Miami Beach
Diogo Ponce, DE, Miami Beach
Robert Reddish, WR, Somerset Silver Palms
Markal Roberson, WR, Miami Carol City
Tyrese Simons, SS/RB, Hollywood Avant Garde Academy
Joel Tavares, WR, North Miami Beach
Ronald Theodore, OL/DL, Hollywood Avant Garde
Jonathan Zarut, LS, Miami Christopher Columbus
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