In 2004, the Northwest Jaguars (Germantown, MD) captured the 3A state championship. The team was led then by quarterback Ike Whitaker, now a red-shirt freshman quarterback at Virginia Tech. Northwest, 5-0 heading into this Friday’s match-up versus Magruder, is hoping to repeat its 2004 success and is being led by another future Hokie in defensive lineman Justin Young .
“We’ve got great talent and depth this year,” said the 6-4, 250-pound Young. “We have a great offense and a great defense. If we can just keep our focus, I think we can make it back to states.”
Northwest moved to a 3-3-5 defense this season. Young plays left defensive end, but has also moved inside to the nose guard spot on occasion. He feels he has played well this season, but, more importantly, is happy with the defense yielding only 12.2 points per game.
“I don’t really know my stats, but I’ve been playing decent,” Young said. “I’m just trying to play team ball. The defense is doing well. We’re playing together and we’re playing within the defense. I’m just interested in getting other players some stats. My role as a d-lineman is just to free up the linebackers. If we make our plays as d-linemen, then our linebackers can make the plays.”
At only 16 years of age (he turns 17 next month), Young certainly could grow an extra inch or so before he gets to the next level. That’s why the Tech staff says he could end up as a defensive end or defensive tackle.
“Coach Wiles told me they are recruiting me as a defensive end, but because of my age and because of my size they may move me inside,” Young said. “It doesn’t matter to me where I play. I just want to play.”
Young saw his future team in action earlier this year, when the Hokies defeated Cincinnati. It was his first ever game experience at Virginia Tech.
“It was nice,” Young recalled. “I really liked the loud stadium. I also liked the locker room. The atmosphere was really hyped and it was an exciting game in itself. We fell behind and came back. I liked seeing the defense step it up.”
Young had a chance to catch up with his former (and future) teammate, Ike Whitaker.
“He told me he’s glad to have another Jaguar coming to Blacksburg,” Young said.
Young plans to graduate on time and will enroll...
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