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Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Eye on POY: Maine football

By Eric Snyder

The window on the Gatorade State Football Player of the Year race is closing, and time is running out for student-athletes to state their POY case. The award recognizes not only athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Here are two top candidates who meet the basic award criteria as determined by our ESPNHS team that administers the program's selection process.

Shaun Carroll
Senior running back, Lawrence (Fairfield, Maine)

2011 Team record: 11-1
2011 Team standing: Lost in Class A state final

2011 Carries-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 189-1,570 (8.3)-19
2011 Punt returns-AVG.-TDs: 8-22.4-1

Academics: A-minus average
Collegiate destination: Undecided

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Rushed for 183 yards and three TDs in Class A state semifinal. Back-to-back seasons with more than 1,000 rushing yards.

Louis DiTomasso
Senior running back/linebacker, Wells (Maine)

2011 Team record: 12-0
2011 Team standing: Won Class B state title

2011 Carries-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 203-1,559 (7.7)-18
2011 Catches-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 7-95 (13-6)-0

2011 Tackles: 133
2011 Fumble recoveries: 1
2011 Forced fumbles: 1

Academics: B-plus average
Collegiate destination: Undecided

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: 2011 Campbell Conference Player of the Year. Rushed for 134 yards and a TD in 21-13 win over Leavitt in Class B state title game. Had season high 22 tackles to go with 102 yards rushing and a score in a 27-14 win over Westbrook. Rushed for 268 yards and four scores (along with 12 tackles) in a 26-21 win over York.

Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Football Player of the Year race isn’t over yet. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Here are some more of many who’ve been in the conversation throughout the 2011 campaign.

Spencer Cooke: Cheverus (Portland, Maine) senior running back/defensive back
Jordan Hersom: Leavitt (Turner, Maine) senior quarterback
Andrew Libby: Thornton Academy (Saco, Maine) sophomore running back/defensive back
Paul McDonough: Wells (Maine) senior quarterback/defensive back
Cam Olson: Cheverus (Portland, Maine) senior quarterback/safety

Think we're missing a deserving Gatorade State Player of the Year candidate in your state? Let us know via e-mail at ESPNHS_GPOY@ESPN.com or Twitter @ESPNHS_GPOY.