High-SchoolPlayer-of-the-Year: Robert C. Bird

The Gatorade Player of the Year Program honors athletes who meet comprehensive and exacting criteria in high school sports. Candidates are judged on athletic production and impact in the current season. Contenders also must demonstrate high academic achievement and exemplary personal character, including volunteerism, sportsmanship and community leadership. Senior status has no bearing on a candidate’s merit and selections are made independent of ESPNU's recruit rankings.

That being said, the state’s top five football recruits as ranked by ESPNU are sure to enter the 2011-12 Gatorade Football Player of the Year conversation at some point. Here they are …

1. Bridgeport High (Bridgeport, W.V.) kicker Connor Kornbrath
  • ESPNU position rank: No. 29 K
  • Height: 6-foot-5
  • Weight: 208 pounds
  • College: University of Iowa (verbal)
  • ESPNU scouting report: "Connor has a D1 frame as a punter. He has a short punting approach will should help with his snap to foot times. He has a fairly consistent drop, but his hands need work in catching the ball. His levers are long and leg speed is solid. He has a 4.7-4.8 'A' ball currently and is solid on kickoffs."

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