Forest Park’s Mustaqeem Williams holds lofty track and football goals


Forest Park junior Mustaqeem Williams, shown winning the 100 meters at the Virginia AAA state meet last June, holds football scholarship offers from Boston College and Toledo. (John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

HAMPTON, Va. — Minutes after completing his final event in a jam-packed schedule on Saturday at the Virginia AAA indoor track and field championships, Forest Park junior Mustaqeem Williams was already thinking ahead.

Williams had defended his 55 meters title in a blazing 6.39 seconds, scored in three other individual events and run the anchor leg on a record-breaking 800 meter relay to deliver the Woodbridge school its first state title in any boys’ sport.

During the two-day meet at the Boo Williams Sportsplex, the 5-foot-10 speedster confirmed his status as one of the nation’s premier high school sprinters, but he still felt he left a few points on the table. Not quite disappointed, he certainly saw room for improvement, chasing his own lofty standards that keep on climbing.

“I had some ups and downs with some of my events,” Williams said, “but I’ll come back next year and pick up where I left off.”

For Williams, those dynamic skills and the determination to improve both translate easily to the football field. He hopes to play both sports in college, and football recruiters have taken notice.

Williams, a wide receiver, safety and kick returner, has not added any new scholarship offers since last summer when each Boston College and Toledo extended one, but that could change soon as he’s had interest from several Football Bowl Subdivision schools.

Williams said he plans to attend an upcoming junior day at Virginia and also listed interest from West Virginia, Ohio State and Florida State. Forest Park Coach David Cocolli believes Williams has the skills to be a cover corner at the next level and said he’s fielded inquiries about the player from Notre Dame and Western Michigan in recent weeks.

“A lot of people are calling and checking in on him right now,” Cocolli said.

Last year, Williams caught two touchdowns and also returned three punts for scores as the Bruins went 4-6. He missed the final two games of the season with an ankle injury. Check out his junior highlights here.

Cocolli said Williams stands to have even more of an impact on offense during his senior season with the addition of former Potomac Falls Coach Scott Woodlief as offensive coordinator. Woodlief’s plan, according to Cocolli, is for Williams to move around the formation, finding some creative ways to get him the ball in space and utilize his unique speed.

Williams said he’d like to make a few college visits in the spring around his track schedule, and he’ll also take the SATs for the first time.

Outdoors, he will try to defend his state title in the 100 meters after finishing one-hundredth of a second off the state record. He believes those results on the track will continue to help his case as a football prospect.

“A lot of football coaches are looking for those two-sport athletes to do football and track,” Williams said. “I think me putting up big numbers for track will suck them into me even more, so I can go out there and look good for their school.”

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Roman Stubbs · February 26, 2013

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