Elkins is the number three football team in Class ‘AAA' after five weeks of the 2012 high school football season.
The Tigers were counting on the Single Wing to trip teams up again this year. What they didn't know is that a transfer student would have a big impact and a big part in Elkins' 5-0 start to the year.
This week's MVB, MVP is L.J. Lawrence.
"I actually wasn't even planning on playing football, I was just playing basketball, but hey I'd give it a try, my senior year," said Lawrence.
"The first thing we noticed, in conditioning, was that he had some speed, a little bit of quickness," said Elkins Head Football Coach Greg Hott. "Then we just kind of waited to see because you never know when a kid puts on football pads what they're going to be like but his first day of hitting, he leveled some people. So now we're like, ‘Oh, ok, I think he is a football player,' and so we were really tickled. He got to play in our scrimmage against Keyser and we got to see that he could react pretty well defensively and that he had some skill at running back."
Lawrence transferred to Elkins from Hempfield Area High School in Greensburg, Pa; just outside of Pittsburgh. His previous football experience was somewhat similar to Elkins' offense so fit in to the Tigers' scheme well, but still…
"We never really expected some kid to average 200 plus yards a game," said Coach Hott.
On 76 carries this season Lawrence has rushed for 975 yards, averaging almost 13 yards a carry. He has scored 11 touchdowns and six two-point conversions, accounting for 72 of the Tigers total points. For L.J., it's all fundamental.
"Get the ball first, I have to catch the ball and then hitting my holes as fast as I can and just go from there, see where I can get an opening at," said Lawrence. "I try to do better every game. Every game I try to go out and do better than what I did last week."
L.J. Lawrence is extremely talented and will likely continue to terrorize defenses but he's a leader on and off the gridiron.
"Well of course as a coach and a teacher and I get to see him all day long," said Coach Hott. "To me, an athlete is more than just somebody who performs on the field. They have to perform at school. He gets along really well with all the kids. I think he's an ideal student at Elkins High School. He also performs when it's time on the field. I see a lot more out of him too. He's just a great person."