By: Bob Redd
Editor: J.T. Powell
Schools are beginning to take notice of Gage Mannon. Mannon of Pulaski County (Va.) High School was first team all-region, and first team all-district at safety and running back in 2018. On the defensive side of the ball, where he is getting attention, he had 79 tackles, nine pass breakups and an interception.
“I played down in the box a lot. They [coaches] specified me as a rover, so I moved around a lot,” Mannon said.
Mannon and the Cougars played to an 8-4 record last season in a tough Virginia Group 4A Region and those statistics are turning heads.
“I haven’t received any offers, but I have three schools looking at me right now, Appalachian State, VMI and Wake Forest. They came to the school and talked to me,” Mannon said.
Mannon plans to have a busy spring and summer, going to quite a few camps and showcases.
“This year I’m hitting up a lot of D-1 camps and some coaches hit me up to come to their camps too,” Mannon said. “I’m going to JMU, App State, Wake, ODU, Marshall, Coastal, WVU, Virginia, Charlotte and UNC.”
During the off-season Mannon has been training with friends and teammates in addition to a former collegiate star who has opened a facility in Roanoke, Va.
“I go down on my own to the Steel Lab Performance, it’s a workout area where I train with Jarrett Ferguson. He was a great at Virginia Tech and I train with him. I do some field work, back pedals, breaks, the ladder, and I’ve been working hard.”
Mannon draws inspiration of the gridiron from a late Washington Redskins player.
“Sean Taylor, that’s who I try to play like. That’s a big role model for me. I hate that I didn’t get to see him play when he was alive. That’s the best player I have ever seen on film. He knew the game,” Mannon said.
For his senior season Mannon has a goal.
“There is one goal I really want to accomplish and that is for the whole team,” Mannon pointed out. “I am a big believer in a team sport. I like stats myself, but when it comes down to it, there are 11 people on the football field. I really feel this year we have a team that could go to state and win it. That’s my goal. That’s it.”
In the classroom Mannon has a 3.5 GPA and in college he would like to study health and physical education.
In closing he would like coaches to know - “I am a hard worker and I won’t let you down.”
For more on this article contact J.T. Powell: email@example.com