Outside the Huddle and Blitz are counting down who they feel are the top 50 individual players in northeast Indiana heading into the 2021 season.
Today, we continue unveiling the best players in the area with positions No. 40-36.
No. 40: WR/DB Jordan Turner, senior, North Side
Affectionally known as “JT” on East State Blvd, Turner has some of the surest hands in the SAC. He has doubled his receptions each of the past two years, from 14 in 2018 to 30 a year later to 63 catches last season.
Turner’s receiving yards and touchdowns have also trended upward over the last three years, finishing with 838 yards and seven scores a year ago.
It will be a different quarterback throwing to him in 2021, but Turner has the skills to continue to show out. His long and strong frame allows him to win physical battles with shorter defensive backs and also has breakaway speed when the situations arise.
He is also someone who isn’t a liability when he spot action on defense.
COACH’S QUOTE ON JORDAN TURNER
“Jordan can play in the slot or out wide. He is a great route runner and can also block really well in the open field. He is a very tough and dynamic runner after the catch and a great leader for our team.” – North Side coach Ben Johnson
No. 39: RB/DB Alex Currie, senior, Adams Central
The Flying Jets are loaded with veteran talent in its senior class, one of the reasons why they are the favorites in the ACAC this season. A huge part of that class is Currie, who makes a consistent impact on both sides of the ball.
Currie led Adams Central with four INTs a season ago and was second on the team in rushing yards and touchdowns. He averaged nine yards per carry and also hauled in 132 yards through the air.
Built in that traditional mold they seem to have in Monroe, Currie is not a hulking physical specimen, but he has acute knowledge of the game and is relentless in his work ethic. When you make contact with Currie, you remember it, whether it is on offense or defense.
COACH’S QUOTE ON ALEX CURRIE
“Alex has a lot of speed and skill – truly a natural athlete. A lot of the things he does seems effortless, but in reality he works really hard at everything he does. He is definitely one of several seniors we are expecting great things from this season.” – Adams Central coach Michael Mosser
No. 38: OL/DL Sam Plattner, senior, South Adams
Offensive line isn’t sexy (for most anyway), but good ones can be hard to find at every level of football. Plattner is that guy for the Starfires, particularly has he has ascended to a primary leadership role as the lone starter up front back from a year ago.
Plattner is a grinder who loves the physically of the sport. Nothing pleases him more than being able to maul a guy in the trenches. That ferocity gives him an edge, whether it is blocking or attempting to blow up a play in the backfield on defense.
As the Starfires attempt to reload following the loss of so much production, Plattner will be a steadying presence for the newbies learning the ropes.
COACH’S QUOTE ON SAM PLATTNER
“Sam is a three-year starter at center for us. He is the only returning OL from our state runner-up team and has taken the bull by the horns leading the rest of the offensive line. He has an impeccable work ethic and you can always count on him.” – South Adams coach Grant Moser
No. 37: RB/LB Will Hoover, senior, Central Noble
Some of the top players in high school football aren’t necessarily the biggest college prospects. Sometimes, they are guys who do it all for their team.
Enter Will Hoover. All the senior did a year ago was lead Central Noble in rushing with 767 yards and nine touchdowns and also account for a team-high 135 tackles to go with eight TFL.
Hoover works on his craft constantly. He is never satisfied with how he is performing and always looks at ways to get better. His athleticism is matched by his leadership skills, as the Cougars have looked to him as guidance as the 2021 season approaches.
COACH’S QUOTE ON WILL HOOVER
“Will is one of the smartest and toughest football players I’ve ever coached and been around. Offensively, he understands how to play the running back position and is getting better at it each day. Defensively, he has an extremely high motor and just has a way of getting himself involved in almost every play. He makes us a better football team and kids gravitate towards him on and off the field.” – Central Noble coach Hayden Kilgore
No. 36: LB Isaac Carswell, senior, New Haven
Carswell flirted with the top 50 a year ago and felt cheated when he didn’t get a spot. All he did to show out in 2020 was amass 47 tackles and eight TFL from his outside linebacker spot.
The senior has been overshadowed by others over the last few years at New Haven, but his play on the ball is outstanding. Carswell always has his head up and is stellar at keeping his eyes on the quarterback in zone coverage. He can then close quickly on receivers and make plays when the ball is in the air.
Look for Carswell to step up and be a leader on a unit that has a lot of talent, but just needs to put it all together.