Nation's top prep RB wins award, immediately hands it to rival
St. Augustine's Leonard Fournette felt a competitor was more deserving of the award.
Just a couple of days after visiting with Alabama coach Nick Saban, St. Augustine (La.) High School running back Leonard Fournette was in Louisiana being recognized by the Greater New Orleans Quarterback Club's Prep Player of the Year Award.
But in a refreshing show of humility, Fournette instead presented the award to East Jefferson High School QB Eugene Wells, who had just led the Warriors to a state championship in Louisiana's division 4A.
"I’d like to thank you all again for picking me Prep Player of the Year," Fournette said, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. "But I feel like I’ve seen [Wells] grow as a young man, so I feel like Eugene Wells deserves this."
Fournette then presented Wells with the trophy. The two had competed against one another in their sophomore and junior season, splitting two matchups. St. Augustine has since switched divisions.
"I’d like to thank Leonard Fournette,’’ Wells said, according to the paper. "I’ve been watching him since I was a freshman. He’s a great running back.
"I wasn’t expecting this, but it’s a great honor. Thank you to everyone and once again to my family for their support. Once a Warrior always a Warrior."
Wells led East Jefferson to a perfect 15-0 season, and the state championship was the school's first in 59 years of playing football.
"I played against him twice, in my junior year and senior year and as a player you could see he grew," Fournette told the paper after the event. "He got better as a player and he got better as a quarterback. And he won a state championship.
"He became a leader and I just felt like he deserved this award. Even though I don’t talk to him a lot, I couldn’t be prouder of him for being a leader and for winning a state championship."
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