Antonio Wardlow is a jack-of-all-trades for Head Coach D’Angelo Bell and the Parkland High School varsity football team. Rarely exiting any game, Wardlow plays safety on defense, wide receiver and some quarterback on offense, and he returns punts and kick-offs.
The 6-2, 185 pound prospect is truly one of the center pieces of his team.
“He does all phases for us,” Bell said. “We consider him the best athlete in North Carolina. He runs a 4.4 in the 40. He’s one of the best defensive backs in the country. If you move, he’ll hit you. I mean, he’s a ferocious hitter. He’s our kick and punt returner. Last year he returned four punts for touchdowns. He’s our top wide receiver. The kid never comes off the field.”
Wardlow’s favorite position, safety, is the position most colleges are looking at him to play. While Coach Bell believes wide receiver may be Wardlow’s “best position,” his playmaking ability on the defensive side of the ball is what has attracted so many top schools.
“Mainly to play in the secondary,” Wardlow said when asked where colleges see him playing on the next level. “Probably safety. I play safety, wide receiver, punt returner, and a little bit of quarterback for my team. I have to say I like the secondary. I like hitting. I’m known for making big plays and big hits.”
Among the schools showing heavy interest are UNC, Duke, Wake Forest, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Vanderbilt, all of whom have officially offered according to Coach Bell. Virginia Tech, Syracuse, Michigan, Virginia, and South Carolina are schools showing heavy interest. Michigan, Tennessee, Wake Forest, Duke, UNC, NC State, Virginia, and South Carolina are among the schools to have visited Parkland since the beginning of the evaluation period.
UVa made a trip this week to Parkland to see Wardlow. Virginia Tech, who has verbally offered according to Coach Bell, has not yet visited the school.
“Virginia Tech has verbally offered me I think but they haven’t been in yet,” Wardlow said. “Virginia hasn’t offered. Coach [Danny] Rocco from Virginia told me they have to see my film before they can offer. I really don’t know much about either school. I still need to check out some things about both of them.”
Wardlow maintains that he has no favorites, instead choosing to wait and see which programs...
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