BLITZ Football Player of the Year – Gunner Stockton

Gunner Stockton has a white-knuckled grip on the BLITZ Football Player of the Year award. It was just about anonymous, as only one voter on the panel failed to give the QB the top vote. For the 5-star South Carolina commit, this makes it a 3-peat for the junior as Player of the Year.

The honors come on the heels of what was yet another fantastic season, as he continued to climb the state record book in passing yards and passing TD, putting himself in a great position to perhaps wind up on top at the end of his senior year in 2021.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

  • 3,128 PASS YDS, 45 TD
  • 68% COMPLETION (213/317)
  • 1,581 RUSH YDS, 26 TD
  • 3X 6-TD PASSING GAMES
  • 5X 6+ COMBINED TD GAMES
  • 4,709 TOTAL YDS
  • 71 TOTAL TD
  • 133.5 QB Rating

Stockton’s 45 TD passes mark his second time in three years eclipsing the elite mark of 40, and simultaneously sets a new high for him. His 26 rushing scores are a new personal best. He also set a personal best in rushing yards (1,581) and his QB Rating (133.5) was just shy of last season’s career high. All told, Stockton now has 9,518 passing yards (8th most in state history) and 122 passing scores (3rd), 3,416 rushing yards, and 62 TDs on the ground. Add it up and you get 12,934 total yards and 184 total TD. Ridiculous!

Perhaps the best numbers though are going 35-5 as a starter, collecting 3 region titles, 3 quarterfinal or deeper runs, 3 10-win seasons, and a pair of #1 state rankings. He’s a 3-time All-American and All-State talent, and was the top passer among all QBs in the state in Class 2A this season.

VOTING RESULTS

  1. Gunner Stockton – 77 pts (15 1st-place votes)
  2. Malaki Starks – 30 pts (1)
  3. Zach Holtzclaw – 26 pts
  4. J Ben Haynes – 25 pts
  5. Joshua Pickett – 23 pts
  6. Austin Wood – 11 pts

Voting included our 16-person panel made up of sports reporters, writers, video producers, former coaches, players, GHSA officials, and sports experts. The voting is Heisman-style, with the following points system:
1st place votes: 5 pts; 2nd: 3 pts; 3rd: 2 pts; 4th: 1 pts; 5th-6th: 0.5 pts

HISTORY OF FOOTBALL POY

  • 2020 – Gunner Stockton – Rabun Co JR QB
  • 2019 – Gunner Stockton – Rabun Co SO QB
  • 2018 – Gunner Stockton – Rabun Co FR QB
  • 2017 – Bailey Fisher – Rabun Co SR QB
  • 2016 – Bailey Fisher – Rabun Co JR QB
  • 2015 – Bailey Fisher – Rabun Co SO QB
  • 2014 – Charlie Woerner – Rabun Co JR WR/RB/DB
  • 2013 – Joseph Mancuso – Union Co SO QB
  • 2012 – Tyler Dominy – Dawson Co SR QB
  • 2011 – Kevin Ellison – Habersham Central SR QB
  • 2010 – Ashely Lowery – White Co SR RB/DB
  • 2009 – Ashely Lowery – White Co JR RB/DB

Stockton is the second straight Wildcat QB to 3-peat the award, following in the footsteps of predecessor Bailey Fisher. It also continues a trend of Rabun County earning the honors 7 years running.

WHO WILL WIN IT NEXT YEAR?

Gee…this is a tough one. Almost guaranteed it will be Stockton taking it again next year as a senior barring anything crazy happening. That’s not a slight on the guys coming back or newcomers, but Gunner is that good. Of the finalists this year, only Stockton, Starks, and Holtzclaw return for an encore next year. Those guys will lead the way, but dark horses include Dawson’s Jaden Gibson, Commerce’s Sammy Brown, and White County’s Silas Mulligan and/or Darius Cannon. Again, if Gunner plays his brand of football, he likely would win again. However, Malaki Starks is also a 5-star right on his heels.

POY Framed Print (11×17) – Gunner Stockton 2020

POY Framed Print (11×17) – Gunner Stockton 2020

$35.00

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