Columbia High School (S.C.) boasts two definite Division 1A prospects in the 2009 class, head coach Kemper Amick told TechSideline.com. In fact, 6-3 1/2, 211-pound safety/linebacker Damario Jeffery and 5-10 1/2, 192-pound safety/running back Chris Payne each have received Division 1A scholarship offers.
Jeffery has been offered by Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Michigan State, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia Tech. Payne has an official offer from North Carolina and is expected to receive one from South Carolina very soon according to a report on PalmettoSports.com. The same report has South Carolina as the favorite for Payne, while Jeffery has a different early favorite.
“Damario has stated on a number of occasions that he favors Virginia Tech,” Amick said. “A lot of that has to do with the fact that we run the exact same defense Tech runs. He plays outside linebacker, but he also plays strong safety. We’ll drop him over the top in coverage. He is a good looking kid on the field. And he can run.”
Jeffery’s varsity football career began his freshman year. He would miss his entire sophomore year due to injury, returning this past season in strong fashion with a 100-tackle, four-interception performance.
“He started as a freshman at free safety,” Amick said. “The spring of his freshman year, he won his weight class at the regional strength meet. A month after that, he was playing flag football in gym and he blew his knee out. He missed his entire sophomore season. He was cleared to go in December of his sophomore year. Two months after, he wins the strength meet again. He has never put a brace on in anything he has done since the injury. My only concern this past season was if he would be aggressive or if he would be thinking about the knee. From day one, he was throwing his body around.”
Jeffery combines size with outstanding overall athleticism (he has run the 40 in 4.53 seconds). The strength meet mentioned by Amick includes the bench press and the squat, among other things. Last year, Jeffery posted a max squat of 480 pounds and a max bench of 285 pounds.
“The strength meet combines different schools...
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