CHICAGO — In its 33rd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, has announced Trevor Lawrence of Cartersville High School as its 2017-18 Gatorade Georgia Football Player of the Year. Lawrence is the first Gatorade Georgia Football Player of the Year to be chosen from Cartersville High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Lawrence as Georgia’s best high school football player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Football Player of the Year award to be announced in December, Lawrence joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports, including Mitchell Trubisky (2012-13, Mentor High School, Ohio), Greg Olsen (2002-03, Wayne Hills High School, N.J.), Matthew Stafford (2005-06 Highland Park High School, Texas), Harrison Smith (2006-07 Knoxville Catholic High School, Tenn.), Latavius Murray (2007-08, Onondaga High School, N.Y.), Brock Osweiler (2008-09, Flathead High School, Mont.) and Leonard Fournette (2014-15 & 2012-13, St. Augustine High School, La.).
The 6-foot-5, 215-pound senior quarterback passed for 3,296 yards and 41 touchdowns this past season, leading the Purple Hurricanes to an 11-1 record and the second round of the Class AAAA state tournament. The state’s returning Gatorade Football Player of the Year, Lawrence completed 177 of 256 passes and was intercepted just once. A three-time First Team All-State honoree, he broke the state career passing records for both yards (13,908) and touchdowns (161) and has been selected to play in the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Lawrence is ranked as the nation’s No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2018 by Rivals.com.
A devoted member of his church community and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Lawrence has volunteered locally on behalf of his school’s peer-leadership program and Challenger Football youth team. “Lawrence is a kid who is calm under pressure, never gets rattled and makes all the plays,” said Doyle Kelley, head coach at Cedartown High. “It’s unbelievable the throws that he makes. You have to see him to believe it; he’s just a phenomenal football player.”
Lawrence has maintained a 4.06 GPA in the classroom. He has verbally committed to play football on scholarship at Clemson University in the fall of 2018.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Two-time winner Lawrence joins Gatorade Georgia Football Players of the Year Jake Fromm (2015-16, Houston County High School), A.J. Gray (2014-15, Washington County High School), Deshaun Watson (2013-14, Gainesville High School), Taylor Lamb (2012-13, Calhoun High School), Kenyan Drake (2011–12, Hillgrove High School), Brian Randolph (2010-11, Kell High School), and Hutson Mason (2009-10, Lassiter High School) among the state’s list of former award winners.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Lawrence will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants – one for each sport – will be announced throughout the year.
To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow the conversation on Twitter #GatoradePOY. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visit http://playeroftheyear.gatorade.com/.