Finally, Hunter Joyer has it all.
He is the marquee player on an elite team and, best of all, the senior fullback/linebacker doesn't have to worry about where he'll be playing his college football because he already has made a commitment to the University of Florida.
"I'm excited about it all," said the 6-foot, 245-pounder. "I'm not quite sure how to say it; I'm just trying to let it come to me and not force it. But I am definitely looking forward to my senior year."
In his first season with the Crusaders last fall, Joyer made an impact. He took over the starting fullback spot, doubled up at linebacker and played a key role in TC's march to the Class 2B state final.
But his primary role was that of a blocking back, helping Hank McCloud rush for nearly 1,800 yards. With McCloud and four-year starting quarterback Christian Green graduated, Joyer, who can bench-press nearly 500 pounds and squat 550, is without question "The Man" for the Crusaders in 2010.
"You look at all the things Hunter brings to the table and it's obvious he is going to be critically important for us this fall," Coach Bob Henriquez said. "His experience, his ability to run the football, block and play defense, it's going to be vital for us and for the younger players to learn from."
But Henriquez said TC has been able to reach the state final two of the past three years by staying focused on team goals, not individual statistics.
"We don't look at it in terms of featuring one player, but certainly a lot of what we do will be built around Hunter's talents," Henriquez said. "We'll need some of our other players to step up because we can't be a one-man show."
The unassuming Joyer understands that. Still, he hopes to see a lot more work this season carrying the ball. Despite rushing for more than 400 yards last year, he averaged less than 10 carries a game. This season, he's not only prepared to rush the ball more, but also catch it out of the backfield and continue to play on defense.
"As long as the team is doing well and I'm out there with them contributing, you can't complain," he said. "This is my last year of high school so I just want to do whatever I'm asked to do, enjoy it as much as I can and just take it all in."
Crusaders Stadium, 4630 N. Rome Ave., TampaCLASS-DISTRICT:
2B-5 (with Avon Park, Sarasota Cardinal Mooney, Orlando Lake Highland Prep and Mulberry)COACH:
Bob Henriquez (109-57, 15th season)LAST SEASON:
South LakeSept. 10:
at Berkeley PrepSept. 17:
at Ocala Trinity CatholicSept. 24:
Orlando Lake Highland PrepOct. 1:
Deerfield Beach Zion LutheranOct. 15:
at Clearwater Central CatholicOct. 22:
Sarasota Cardinal MooneyOct. 29:
at Mulberry Nov. 5:
at Avon ParkNov. 11:
No.NamePos.Ht.Wt.Yr.2Tyree HolderDB5-9160Jr.3Trevor RegisterRB5-10185So.4Calvin ArmatasWR5-8155Jr.5Corbett ChivarskyQB6-3165Fr.6Michael ClarkWR6-5170Fr.8Zach DyerLB/RB5-10170Jr.9Willie ConnellyDB5-9150Fr.10Carson BomarLB/DB6-2190Sr.11Zach BenjaminWR6-3170So.12Conner LouisQB5-10160Sr.15Daniel FasaniDB5-9150Jr.17Mike PalevedaK/P5-10175Sr.21Hunter JoyerRB/LB6-0245Sr.22Angel DocoboLB/DB5-9175Sr.23Austin GriffinWR5-8165Sr.25Jordan Rich-RogersRB5-9185So.27Kendrick MentionDB5-9165So.31Reid FisherLB5-9170Jr.34TJ HarrellLB/RB6-0175Fr.37Zack GrantWR6-0170Sr.39Aaron BuckleyLB/FB6-2215Sr.40Tyler RobbLB5-11195Sr.41Alex MaughanLB6-0205Jr.42Stephen DigiacomoDB5-10170Sr.43Mark LazzaraLB5-11180Jr.54Edwin BucknerDL6-1238Jr.55Austin LyonsDL6-1230So.57Ramsey MurrDL6-0235Sr.58Dylan OwenDL6-0250Jr.60Tyler MagillDL6-2250Jr.61Steven MorejonOL6-2240Sr.62Chance FoxDL5-11210So.63Taylor TimmonsDL/OL6-2265Jr.64Michael LeoneDL6-2225So.65David ValdesOL6-2265Sr.67Nick ForondaDL5-8210Jr.68Reese HenryDL5-8250Jr.7.Josh EstremeraOL6-0290So.74Michael ScheerhornOL6-4205Jr.75Christian FreemanOL/DL6-2284So.77Cory MartinezOL6-3282Fr.80Adam BrandWR5-8160Sr.88Joseph OgleTE6-2215Sr.