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Junior running back named AZ Gatorade Player of the Year
As a result of his excellence in athletics, academics and character, Higley High School varsity running back Draycen Hall was named the Gatorade Arizona Football Player of the Year. He is the first Higley High athlete and one of few juniors to win the title.
Gatorade will grant Hall $1,000 to donate to a youth sport organization of his choice as a part of his reward. He was honored during an assembly at the Gilbert school in February.
Hall said it is an honor to receive such a competitive award from an international organization.
“There are tons of guys in Arizona that are so good,” Hall said. “I don’t know how I got put up there, but I was really surprised and grateful.”
Hall’s athletic ability stands out. He currently leads the state in rushing yards (2,298) and touchdowns (41). Higley Varsity Coach Eddy Zubey describes him as a threat across the board in football, while displaying further athletic excellence in wrestling and track.
With a 4.1 GPA and a heart for his community, Hall defines exemplary leadership. In his free time, he volunteers with Feed My Starving Children and the Boy Scouts of America. At Higley, Hall said he works to do well in school while improving his character as a whole every day.
“He encompasses everything you would want in a student athlete,” Zubey said. “I’m not sure anyone can come close to what he does both on and off the field in the state.”
Despite Hall’s skills, Zubey said the player still remains humble. Hall proves this by showing gratitude toward his parents, coaches and the entire Higley team for helping shape his success.
“Every single person on the team contributed in some type of way at practice, working hard the whole time,” Hall said. “I couldn’t have done it without any of them. I always thank them.”
As Gatorade Arizona Football Player of the Year, Hall is quickly positioning himself to be a top football prospect for college recruiters. Hall plans to study health or medicine in college.