Mr. Everything: Grace QB throws, runs and even blocks

Grace Community quarterback Blake White will lead the Cougars into their area playoff game against Fort Worth Christian on Friday at 7 p.m. (Herb Nygren Jr. | Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Grace Community senior Blake White can do just about everything as a quarterback.

He can sling it with the best of them, throwing for 1,929 yards with 18 touchdowns and five picks.

He can tuck it and run, going for 573 yards at 8.3 per carry.

But what he really loves to do, what earns him his ice cream, is blocking down field.

"I always carry out my fakes and try to get in front of (running back Kade Clayton); I get to throw a few blocks for him," White said. "That's always fun.

"(The coaches) love it. They always tell me to do it. Coach (Mike) Maddox always tells me he'll buy me ice cream if I get a good block down the field to score a touchdown."

When he's not throwing blocks, White has led the Cougars to an 8-2 regular season after going 9-4 last year. Grace opens the TAPPS Division II playoffs at Fort Worth Christian at 7 p.m. Friday.

White and the rest of his fellow seniors remember well the last time the Cougars played the Cardinals, when Grace was upset in the first round in 2010. White's brother, Bradley, was a senior on that team.

"It was pretty emotional because that senior class meant a lot to me," the quarterback said. "Losing that first game and seeing how much it meant to them, it was just real emotional for all of us seniors now."

The class of 2013 now wants a measure of revenge, by winning on Fort Worth Christian's home field in the same manner the Cardinals did two years ago.

Grace will expect to play well against Fort Worth Christian because of the potent offense that White leads. The Cougars put up 504.4 yards per game. White accounts for 250.2 of those yards while junior Kade Clayton averages 190.4 per game.

Maddox called his quarterback a "bullfighter" in the pocket, waiting until the last second before dishing it off if necessary. Maddox added White may be the best combination of runner and thrower he's had at Grace.

"I can't say enough good things about Blake," Maddox said. "He's a warrior. I'm glad he's our quarterback."

White said he doesn't think anyone can stop the Cougars offense, considering the way they've been playing down the stretch.

"I'm in sync with all my receivers," White said. "We're balanced. I don't think anyone can stop anything we throw at them."

Senior Statler Lewis is the team's leading receiver with 34 catches for 597 yards. Lin Gillham, also a senior, is next at 29 for 509. Both have six TD receptions. White also throws to Clayton (25-498), Mark Ritthaler (11-115), Garrett Newman (8-147) and Jonny Spitzer (5-88).

"It's just fun; I can throw the ball to any one of them," White said. "I know they're going to make the catch and get the first down. It's easy on my part."

Part of the reason it's easy is because of the offensive line protecting him.

"The offensive line we have now is probably the best line we've had," White said of starters Josh Boylan, Jacob Wadle, Grant Rook, Clay Costiloe, Matt Parmlee and Trey Marshall.

The line, and White, will be called upon against Fort Worth Christian's strong defensive line.

If the Cougars can get past the Cardinals, they'll likely get a rematch with undefeated Dallas Christian.

"We know we're going to be a hard team to beat," White said. "I think if our run game is there, we should be able to come out with a victory."

Spoken like a quarterback who wants to get out and make a few blocks.


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