Much is made of top recruits, let alone the No. 1 overall prospect in a class. That's certainly been the case for the current Rivals.com No.1, Da'Shawn Hand, who is still deciding between attending Alabama, Michigan or Florida.
Still, all this attention on and off the field is no guarantee of future success. To reinforce that concept, all Hand has to do is look to his uncle, who was once among the most ballyhooed football recruits in Virginia history, a Parade All-American, and now finds himself -- at age 35 -- 10 years removed from a career that began at the University of Maryland and then took in stops out of school, working at an auto raceway, and eventually concluded with a football stint at Division II Carson-Newman.
Now, Damone Boone is a telecom specialist for a solutions firm. At this point, he was supposed to be wrapping up a glorious NFL career.
Hand is trying to avoid precisely that fate, and his focus on field goes a long way toward ensuring Da'Shawn will be more successful at the next level, even if Woodbridge High (Woodbridge, Va.) appears to be in a spiral that could make continuing its season a difficult proposition at best.
Don't take our word for it. Just check out this most recent edition of The Washington Post's First and 17.
- - - - - - -
- Sports & Recreation
- American Football