Blount Press Row

Don’t Tug on Superman’s Cape

York will demand due diligence from Tornado defense

_MG_2437Alcoa senior and Mr. Football finalist Braylon Young makes the tackle against Christian Academy of Knoxville during last week’s Class 3A quarterfinal. Photo by Jolanda Jansma

By Stefan Cooper
Editor
Blount Press Row

What would happen if Superman punched you in the face?

What would happen if he played quarterback?

There’s a neat Youtube video – “What if Superman Punched You?” — that pretty much covers the former.

As to the latter, if they’re not careful, Alcoa’s Tornadoes could very well find out Friday night.

Connor York has made no claims to being “the Man of Steel,” but the Upperman High School quarterback has sure put up some super numbers this season.

Entering Friday’s Class 3A semifinal at Alcoa (12-1), he’s thrown/rushed for a state record 70 touchdowns, snapping to old mark of 69, held by former Christian Academy of Knoxville quarterback Charlie High.

Wait, though. There’s more.

High currently holds the single-season state record for total offense, amassing 5,364 yards during Christian Academy’s 2012 championship season.

Malik Love (23) and John Riley McLaughlin go for the pick.

Malik Love (23) and John Riley McLaughlin go for the pick.

York is all up on that, too. Entering with 4,885 yards – 2,488, 35 touchdowns rushing; 2,419, 35 touchdowns passing – he needs only a night he’s more than capable of to own that record as well. Ask Tyner.

York absolutely smoked ’em in a second round playoff game two weeks ago – nine touchdowns, 711 yards of total offense.

You may hear talk this week Upperman’s schedule hasn’t been all that tough. You may hear the Bees (13-0) haven’t played Alcoa.

You just won’t hear it from any of Alcoa’s coaches.

A passer/runner like that can hurt you.

Junior Brenden Teeter has enjoyed a breakout season for the Tornadoes.

Junior Brenden Teeter has enjoyed a breakout season for the Tornadoes.

The list of finalist for Mr. Football was released the night York ripped Tyner. York’s name wasn’t on it, but Alcoa’s Braylon Young made the cut in what must have been a tough year for Class AA voters. Young, an All-State tackle, is where it starts for the Tornadoes on defense.

Spend an Alcoa defensive series and just watch the guy — on every play. It’ll crack you up how quick he is.

Sophomores Jonathan Decker and Matthew McClurg have teamed with Young to breathe a fierce pass rush into Alcoa’s defense. A secondary featuring seniors John Riley McLaughlin and Malik Love, junior Brenden Teeter and sophomore Dustin Clabough has become a solid cover group.

Jonathan Decker forces a Christian Academy of Knoxville fumble.

Jonathan Decker forces a Christian Academy of Knoxville fumble.

The passer they’ll face Friday has proven terribly accurate this season, York’s 35 touchdown passes balanced against six interceptions.

York wears jersey No. 2 for a reason. His hero is Heisman Trophy winner and Texas A&M sophomore Johnny Manziel.

A great many teams tugged on his cape and paid the price for thinking its all just numbers.

Seven hundred yards offense!

One guy!

Dimensions could fly apart if he has a night like that against the Tornadoes.

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