KOSCIUSKO — EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the third in a 10-part series highlighting the top area high school football players to watch for in 2012. The players are taken from the rosters of high school teams in Attala, Choctaw and Holmes counties and are nominated by their coaches. Sports editor Stan Beall makes the selections. The players will be revealed one at a time over a 10-week period and are in no particular order. Previously honored were Ethel High School’s Antez Hopkins and Durant’s Cedric Common.
Kosciusko Whippet senior Kendric Riley does anything asked of him, and excels at it — whether it is on the defensive, or offensive side of the football.
“He is a very athletic and physical player,” said coach Tyler Peterson. “On all of our maximum weight lifting charts, he’s at the top in each and every category, and he’s the same way with all of our speed and athleticism charts as well.”
Riley is a young man of few words.
However, he does his talking between the lines on Friday nights.
“I’m working hard to step up and be a leader this year,” said Riley, “I’m going to give a 100 percent every time and leave it all out on the field.”
Riley’s goals are to win a championship with his team and earn a scholarship to play football on the next level.
He starts on both sides of the football as an inside linebacker and as a running back. “He’s extremely fast and extremely physical,” added Peterson, “He’s just a hard-nosed football player.”
Riley will be counted on by the Whippets to carry a heavy load for them due to him playing key positions on both sides of the football.
“I’m working real hard to keep myself as healthy as possible this fall so I can help my team to win our district and hopefully win a championship,” said Riley. “I’m going to give it my all every play, until the whistles blows every time I’m out there.”
And what’s going through his mind before the snap while on defense, he calmly stated, “I’m looking for the man with the ball so I can hit him.”
“We are looking forward to Kendric having a big senior year,” added Peterson, and according to Riley, he’s ready.