High-SchoolPlayer-of-the-Year: Kenyan Drake

Georgia Football POY: Kenyan Drake

December, 1, 2011
A dedicated ESPNHS POY team managed the Gatorade State Football Player of the Year selection process, resulting in this winner based on the awards program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character. For his 50 fellow Gatorade State Football Player of the Year winners, click here.

Gatorade POY: Kenyan Drake
Tom Hauck/ESPNHSKenyan Drake totaled more than 2,000 yards in leading his team to the Class AAAAA postseason.
THE WINNER: Kenyan Drake

THE BASICS: Anatomy of a POY

School: Hillgrove (Powder Springs, Ga.)
Grade: Senior
Position: Running back
Height: 6-foot-1
Weight: 205 pounds

THE PILLARS: Gatorade criteria

Athletic achievement: Drake rushed for 1,610 yards and 18 touchdowns on 173 carries this past season, leading the Hawks to the second round of the Class AAAAA postseason. A preseason First Team All-State selection as named by ESPNHS, he also hauled in 24 receptions for 315 yards and five touchdowns. On special teams, Drake returned 10 kickoffs for 355 yards and two scores. An Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super 11 selection, he totaled 1,600 yards and 20 touchdowns rushing and receiving as a junior in 2010.

Academic excellence: Also a baseball standout, Drake has maintained a 3.23 weighted GPA in the classroom.

Exemplary character: Drake has volunteered year-round as a baseball and football instructor at local youth camps.

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Eye on POY: Georgia football

November, 16, 2011
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.

Eye on POY: Kenyan Drake
Tom Hauck/ESPNHSHillgrove senior running back Kenyan Drake is a finalist for Gatorade Georgia Football Player of the Year.
Kenyan Drake
Senior running back, Hillgrove (Powder Springs, Ga.)

2011 Team record: 11-0 (Class AAAAA)
2011 Team standing: Class AAAAA second round vs. West Forsyth on Friday

2011 Carries-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 154-1,571 (10.2)-15
2011 Catches-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 16-218 (13.6)-5

2011 KO Returns-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 8-268 (33.5)-1
2011 Punt Returns-YDs (AVG.)-TDs: 2-59 (29.5)-0

Academics: B-plus average
Collegiate destination: University of Alabama (verbal)

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Averages 10.4 yards per touch. No. 13 ranked RB in Class of 2012 as rated by ESPNU. 2011 First Team All-State preseason selection as named by ESPNHS. 2011 Super 11 selection as named by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 2010 Class AAAAA Second Team All-State selection as named by the Georgia Sports Writers Association.

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