St. Joseph’s Preparatory school student-athlete named Gatorade Pennsylvania Football Player of the Year
CHICAGO (May 13, 2021) — In its 36th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Kyle McCord of St. Joseph’s Preparatory School as its 2020-21 Gatorade Pennsylvania Football Player of the Year. McCord is the first Gatorade Pennsylvania Football Player of the Year to be chosen from St. Joseph’s Preparatory 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 McCord as Pennsylvania’s best high school football player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Football Player of the Year award to be announced in May, McCord joins an elite group of past state football award-winners, including Emmitt Smith (1986-87, Escambia High School, Fla.), Matthew Stafford (2005-06, Highland Park High School, Texas) and Christian McCaffrey (2012-13 & 2013-14, Valor Christian High School, Colo.).
The 6-foot-3, the 212-pound senior quarterback passed for 1,582 yards and 21 touchdowns this past season, leading the Hawks (6-0) to the Class 6A state championship and a No. 4 MaxPreps national ranking. McCord completed 99 of 153 passes, throwing just one interception, and passed for 337 yards and four TDs in the state title game. The Class 6A, Philadelphia Catholic League, and Maxwell Football Club Player of the Year, he was selected for the 2021 All-American Bowl. McCord was named the High School Football America/National High School Coaches Association National Player of the Year.
McCord has participated in multiple service-mission trips to assist underserved communities. “Kyle McCord has a gifted arm and the football IQ to go with it,” said John Steinmetz, head coach at La Salle College High. “There isn’t a throw he can’t make, and his line of scrimmage adjustments are outstanding. I’ve been here 40 years and in my opinion he’s the best quarterback ever (to come out of) the city.”
McCord has maintained a 3.37 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to play football on scholarship at Ohio State University this fall.
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 works with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
McCord joins recent Gatorade Pennsylvania Football Players of the Year Julian Fleming (2019-20 & 2018-19, Southern Columbia Area High School), Phil Jurkovec (2017-18, Pine-Richland High School), and Lamont Wade (2016-17, Clairton High School), among the state’s list of former award winners.
Through Gatorade’s cause marketing platform “Play it Forward,” McCord has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national youth sports organization of their choosing. McCord is also eligible to submit a 30-second video explaining why the organization they chose is deserving of one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants, which will be announced throughout the year. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants has totaled more than $2.7 million across 1,117 organizations.
Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners, and educators.
To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit www.playeroftheyear.gatorade.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Gatorade.
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