Here at Prep Rally we've spent a good deal of time inspecting the life and times of Da'Shawn Hand, the Rivals.com number 1 overall football recruit in the nation. So far we've learned that's he's a physical freak of nature, a determined athlete and the kind of person who can lead his teammates past obstacles both on and off the field.
Now we know that he's also, "almost a little bit on the nerdy side," in the words of his guidance counselor, Dr. Leah Byrd. In this case, Byrd's description of Hand as a borderline dork is actually a compliment about his larger perspective on life.
"His focus is not just on sports," Byrd said in this latest edition of The Washington Post's First and 17 series. "It's very much on his academics and what he wants to do for his future."
Most would assume that Hand's future is focused primarily on more football. It is, but Hand is more well-rounded than many of his fellow top recruits. Whether or not he makes it in the NFL, he's determined to get a college education and put himself in the best position possible.
Whether that's at Alabama, Florida or Michigan remains to be seen. Wherever it is, Hand is sure to encounter even more challenges that he and his Woodbridge High (Woodbridge, Va.) teammates faced against Freedom High (South Riding, Va.).