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Wednesday, September 28, 2011
MN’s All-State Stock Watch takes on a new look

By By Christopher Parish

Each week, we’ll take an in-depth look at our All-State preseason football team and let you know how a few of those athletes are faring as the season progresses.

This week, we're going with a new and improved format. We'll highlight a blue-chipper (a first-team player), an OTP (other top player) and an under-the-radar pick (someone who didn't make the squad but is making a case to be on the team).

Blue Chip: Sam Sura, South St. Paul, RB

The game wasn't as glamorous as some of South St. Paul's other wins, but Sura and the Packers held off Hill-Murry in a 16-7 win and did most of their damage on the ground. Sura was the star of the show, rushing for 192 yards on an impressive 40 carries and scored a touchdown. The win keeps South St. Paul perfect at 4-0.

OTP: Ryan Poppitz, Wayzata, LB

In a big out-of-state win this past weekend, it was the defense that came up big late and prevented a rally. Poppitz has been one of the biggest leaders of the Trojans defense this season. He's among the team leaders in tackles and sacks and he's a big reason why Wayzata has put together another strong season and is currently No. 2 in the POWERADE Minnesota Weekly Rankings.

Under the Radar: Jeff Jones, Washburn, RB

This is a name you might want to keep an eye on over the next couple of seasons. Jones rushed for three touchdowns in his team's win over Southwest this past weekend, and he's got 405 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground this season (he's also scored two receiving touchdowns). Led by the stellar sophomore, Washburn is 3-1 this season. According to a local story, he scored 68 touchdowns in eighth grade while playing for a youth team.