Things often escalated quickly for defenses trying to stop Kesean Strong. Whether on kick returns, punt returns, or out of the backfield, the 5-10, 175-pound junior regularly rocketed through Prince George’s County 3A/2A/1A defenses before they could get a hand on him, let alone tackle him.
As highlight reel runs and returns accumulated on Strong’s game tape last season, his recruiting escalated quickly, too. A relative unknown at the beginning of the season, the transfer fromCarroll suddenly found himself fielding calls from Ohio State, Miami and others.
“Once my film started to get good, Coach Crump sent it everywhere and I started to hear from them,” Strong said. “It’s real humbling. It makes me want to work harder.”
Tuesday he received his first official offer from Toledo, and he and anyone who saw him tear apart Prince George’s County defenses are confident it will be the first of several he’ll earn as he heads into his senior year.
“That was a real surprise offer,” Strong said. “They hadn’t been in contact with me, I hadn’t received mail or anything, so it was a surprise phone call.”
Strong said he will attend Old Dominion’s junior day later this month, and that schools like North Carolina and Nebraska have also expressed interest. The first coaches he spoke to were from Maryland, and he says he hopes to visit more schools this summer to explore his options.
Strong carried 95 times for 1,363 yards for the Wolverines this year, an average of more than 14 yards per carry. He scored 16 rushing touchdowns and added five as a return man, and accounted for nearly half of Potomac’s total points.
If college coaches weren’t noticing Strong already, the week of October 14-20 likely pinged their radars: Strong scored nine touchdowns in a six-day period, rushing for 252 yards on 24 carries in a loss to Douglass, then 233 more yards on 13 carries against Central later that week. After scoring three touchdowns against Douglass, Strong rushed for four against Central and added two in the return game — one on a 60-yard punt return and one on a 99-yard kickoff return.
“Last year, I didn’t really feel I could show off my talent,” Strong said. “I knew I was capable of it, so it wasn’t really a surprise, it was sort of more of a ‘I told you so’ thing, because I knew I could do it the whole time.”
NUMBER CRUNCH: 9
With 136 total points in seven games this year, Strong was the ninth-highest scoring player in the D.C. area last season. Seven games were the fewest played by any scorer in the top 20.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR:
SPRING SPORTS. Though the snow’s done its best to convince all of us spring will never arrive, spring sports are about to hit their stride, and there’s a full slate of games today scheduled for any field clear enough to play on.
— Paul VI boys’ basketball started and ended the 2013-14 basketball season atop the Post’s rankings. Read how they did it here.
— On the girls’ side, the Riverdale Baptist Crusaders finished No. 1 in the Post Top 20, but they’ve still got work to do
— Take a second to vote on the top play of the D.C. area basketball season here
— Which D.C. alums are headed to the NCAA Tournament? Brandon Parker tells you about a few of them.
VIDEO OF THE DAY:
Vote on the top basketball plays by clicking the link above, but check those plays out right here. You don’t want to miss these:
WHAT TO WATCH:
It’s warming up a bit, the snow is melting and it’s time to get spring sports underway.
Check your school’s athletics hotline for the latest postponements, but if you’re looking for a good matchup tonight, head over to Bullis where the Bulldogs host DeMatha in an early-season clash of IAC and WCAC contenders.
Here’s today’s full spring sports schedule (which will be updated during the day with any postponements).