High-SchoolMinnesota: Sam Sura

MN’s All-State Stock Watch takes on a new look

September, 28, 2011
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.

All-State Stock Watch wants to see more of South St. Paul’s Sura

September, 14, 2011
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, an offensive lineman gets some much-deserved publicity, a star running back isn't getting enough carries, and a stellar QB is carrying his team to impressive heights this season.


UP — Jonah Pirsig, Blue Earth Area, OL

Pirsig was the subject of a big feature by the Minneapolis Star-Tribune this week as one of the state's top recruits. And hey, it's warranted. Pirsig is a beast at 6-foot-9 and 300 pounds, and he's a local hero, spurning top programs such as Wisconsin and Auburn to stay at home and go to Minnesota. And he's a big reason why Blue Earth is off and running with a 2-0 start this season.

DOWN — Sam Sura, South St. Paul

Sam Sura has been spectacular this season. So why's he getting the down arrow on our stock watch? Simple — South St. Paul has been so dominant that he's not getting enough carries. In this week's tilt against North St. Paul, Sura earned just 16 carries, then sat out the entire second half as South St. Paul cruised to a 51-0 victory. Oh sure, in those 16 attempts, he put up 195 yards and four touchdowns. But that's hardly enough work for a spectacular back like Sura. We need to see more carries. (Hey, nobody said coming up with the "DOWN" stock was easy.)

UP — Duke Anyanwu, Blaine, QB

Blaine made a statement this week with a huge win over Hopkins in overtime, and Anyanwu was a big reason why. The senior rushed for four touchdowns in his team's 26-20 victory, and he capped off his impressive day by running in the game-winning score in overtime. Anyanwu's impressive season thus far is starting to pick up steam, and as a result he's gotten some college looks. Keep an eye on this impressive multi-position star.