High-SchoolNorth-Carolina: Under Armour All-America Game

The Five Days of List-Mas: NC's A-List

December, 12, 2011

Monday | Tuesday | Wednesday | Thursday | Friday

Whether you’re putting together a grouping of best quarterbacks or worst albums, or you’re making that special list for Santa, there’s nothing quite like a good list. So in honor of the holiday season we’re bringing you lists all week long — Merry List-Mas!

Today: A-Listers.

In the NFL, Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are A-Listers. In the NBA, it’s LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. But who are the A-Listers in North Carolina? That’s where today’s list comes in. Regardless of sport, here’s our list of the top five A-List athletes in the state. Can you think of an A-Lister we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments.

5. Thomas Graham (SR), Cary Academy, Cross Country
Credentials: Four-time NCISSAA 3A state champ, ninth at Foot Locker Nationals, No. 20 in DyeStat rankings

4. Braxton Ogbueze (SR), United Faith Christian, Basketball
Credentials: Florida recruit, nation's No. 35 player in ESPNU 100

3. Todd Gurley (SR), Tarboro, Football
Credentials: State's No. 2 running back, led Vikings to three straight Class 2A titles, Semper Fidelis All-American

2. Rodney Purvis (SR), Upper Room Christian, Basketball
Credentials: Nation's No. 16 player in ESPNU 100, N.C. State recruit, 2011 Elite 24 participant, friends with Washington Wizards star John Wall

1. Keith Marshall (SR), Millbrook, Football
Credentials: Georgia recruit, Nation's No. 6 player in ESPNU 150, 2011 Gatorade State Player of the Year, Under Armour All-American, school's all-time leading rusher

Click here to check out some of the other states in our Five Days of List-Mas.

Brandon Parker covers North Carolina for ESPNHS magazine and ESPNHS.com. Follow him on Twitter@brandoncparker or email him at brandon.c.parker@espn.com.

Stock is rising for Marshall, Stadnik

October, 6, 2011
It's that time of week for the North Carolina All-State football stock watch. This time around, we'll highlight some big names who now have another jersey to hang in their closet.

UP — Keith Marshall, Millbrook RB
As expected, Marshall bounced back from an abnormal two weeks (43- and 65-yard outputs against Northern Durham and Broughton, respectively) and told me he feels back to 100 percent after battling tendonitis in his knees earlier this year. The senior ran for a season-high 259 yards and five touchdowns in a win against Sanderson. "The field was soggy, so I could cut back easier and not feel it, pain wise," he said. Millbrook's career rushing leader (3,625 yards and counting) also received his jersey for the Under Armour All-America Game last week in a small school ceremony. The Wildcats will need more big games from Marshall with tough games coming up against Leesville Road and Wake Forest-Rolesville.

DOWN — Steve Houston/Tyrone Crowder, Richmond RB/OL
Richmond went down for the first time season and the first time ever to Hoke County last week, which was quite shocking considering the Raiders' prior success. The offense proved stagnant, getting off just 14 plays in the first half and 27 plays in the second half. Houston had a solid game with 80 yards and a score, but two lost fumbles inside the the 10 and two crucial holding penalties on the game's final possession, the Raiders' offense as a whole has some regrouping today before facing Purnell Swett this week.

UP — Brock Stadnik, Western Guilford OL
It's not often that offensive lineman get some love, so it's nice when I can get the chance to honor the big fellas. Like Marshall, Stadnik received his Under Armour All-America Game jersey last week. The four-year starter has been one of the few bright spots this season for the 2-3 Hornets, but there's no doubt his future is bright at South Carolina and, perhaps, beyond.

Brandon Parker covers North Carolina for ESPNHS magazine and ESPNHIGHSCHOOL.com. Follow him on Twitter @brandoncparker or email him at brandon.c.parker@espn.com.