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Pasco preps: Football players, coach of year announced

Players and coach of the year are announced for Pasco football.

Offensive Player of the Year

Malik Johns, Pasco, Sr.

Played nearly every position — running back, quarterback, receiver, defensive back, return specialist — racking up 1,832 all-purpose yards and 22 total touchdowns in the process. The Samford signee (and standout baseball player, too), was the Pirates catalyst, especially after starting 2-3, then winning five straight to make get back to the playoffs. Already a stellar athlete, Johns became a complete player during his career at Pasco and proved to the county’s top playmaker for a team that needed every yard, every touch, every score from the speedster.


Defensive Player of the Year

Ben Wood, Sunlake, Sr.

While recording a team-high 111 tackles and 10 sacks while leading the county’s best defense that allowed only 78 points and posted four shutouts, Wood was the undisputed leader for the Seahawks and their best season in their young existence. Playing linebacker, Wood was on every defensive stop and play, including covering the middle and putting exceptional pressure on opposing quarterbacks. He had eight tackles and a sack in the big rivalry game against Land O’ Lakes. As part of a defense that loses nine of its starters, Wood may be the hardest spot to fill.


Coach of the Year

Bill Browning, Sunlake

Browning still remembers when he first walked the halls to get any able-bodied male student to come play football for the Seahawks program he was starting. Seven years later, Sunlake was 9-2, appearing in its second playoffs and taking home its first Sunshine Athletic Conference title. However, each year, as of late, Browning has become more of a manager, handling and keeping track of more than 100 players between varsity and junior varsity, all the while finding a way to handle the turnover from a large graduating class each season.

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