football

Trinity Valley loaded with talent

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Though things haven't started off exactly like coach Mark Sartain had envisioned with an 0-3 start, it's hard to deny the kind of Division I talent that is on the Athens (Texas) Trinity Valley Community College team.
Sartain says that his star running back, Eric Ransom, may be off to a slow start, but it's hard to deny that he doesn't have the ability to be one of the best he's ever coached. Besides Ransom, there are several other top prospects that are on the board with offers or recruiting interest very early.
"Eric is getting a lot of attention from USC and Florida among many others," Sartain said. "He's a home-run hitter. He's one of those guys that can get through the line of scrimmage and can make people miss. Of course, then he can just spring the distance."
Ransom totaled 1,659 yards in the 2005 season which earned him a spot on the pre-season All-American Team. So far, Sartain says that he's only reached a total of 240 yards through the first three games.
"Eric is having a slow start and we're a little younger up front than we thought," Sartain said. "Anytime you have a returning All-American, people are going to game plan to stop that as well."
Though Ransom might be the most talked about prospect, he's not the first with offers that Sartain knows about. Safety Nevin McKenzie, a 6-foot-2, 210-pounder, already has grabbed an offer from Louisville and some others according to the coach.
Cornerback Arseel Shakoor has also been offered by Louisville and Houston.
"These are just the colleges that have offered these kids and let me know about it through this office," Sartain said. "Kids have gotten some others that are not through this office."
Sartain says that his kicker, Sinisa Vrvilo is not only good, but probably one of the "best in the country at any level."
"He was getting some offers back in the spring to leave, but he chose to hang around here another year," Sartain said about the kicker. "He's four of four in field goals right now and he's had a good first three games."
A trio of linebackers also are top prospects according to the Trinity Valley coach. Sartain says that Jacob Martin, Jacob Bane, and Arthur McKenzie are all top prospects.
Bane may be the best of the bunch.
"He's playing exceptionally well right now for us," Sartain said. "I think he's got around 24 or 25 tackles through the first three games with two or three sacks. It's amazing because he wasn't even the starter in the first two."
McKenzie and Martin are both mid-term qualifiers and will be able to arrive on campus for spring football next year.
Sartain says that despite all the talent, they've got to eliminate the mistakes that they've made in the first couple of games and get back on the winning track.
"We've been shooting ourselves in the foot," he said. "We've got to change that and play like the national championship caliber team that everybody expected."
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