Charleston’s Storey Caps Arkansas Super Team
By Kurt Voigt The Associated Press
Greg Kendrick knew he was inheriting a talented quarterback in Ty Storey after he was named the Charleston head coach following the 2012 season.
Even Kendrick, though, didn’t fully understand the amount of work Storey put in his craft to back up that talent — at least not until after the 6-foot-3, 220-pound signal caller went out and led the Tigers to the Arkansas 3A state championship this season.
Storey’s season-long romp through the state, which included a six-touchdown performance in the 42-19 win in the championship game against Glen Rose, was more than enough to earn his selection as the quarterback on the 2013 Associated Press Super Team.
The junior finished the season 268-of-408 passing (66 percent), throwing for 52 touchdowns for 4,241 yards as the Tigers won their fourth state championship since 2005. This season’s championship came in the first year under Kendrick, who moved up to head coach from offensive coordinator after Doug Loughridge left for Alma.
“I couldn’t ask for a better situation to step into, especially as a head coach,” Kendrick said. “Ty makes my job and play-calling extremely easy, knowing that he’s in my back pocket.
“It makes for an easy transition when your leaders are your hardest-working kids like Ty.”
Storey’s rise to the top of the quarterback crop in Arkansas has come as little surprise for most, especially after the son of one-time Charleston coach Shane Storey committed to play at Arkansas prior to his junior season.
Kendrick, who coached at Greenwood before coming to Charleston as an assistant, said the Tigers began transitioning from the run-based Wing-T offense to more of an open attack when Ty Storey was a seventh-grader.
They completed that transition in 2012, Storey’s sophomore season, in which he threw for 4,460 yards and 49 touchdowns.
“At a small school, I feel like you have to adjust your offense to your kids,” Kendrick said. “It was a no-brainier with Ty.”
Storey was even better this season as a junior, throwing just one of his 11 interceptions over his final six games as Charleston averaged 41 points per game in five playoff games.
Storey chose his home-state Razorbacks over Southeastern Conference powers such as Alabama and Auburn, hoping to limit the recruiting attention as much as possible.
Kendrick said Storey is too busy practicing his craft, even while playing basketball and baseball, to notice the outside attention. The two have already been working to address some mechanical issues in Storey’s throwing motion, based on tips provided by Arkansas offensive coordinator Jim Chaney.
“He’s the ultimate perfectionist,” Kendrick said. “He’s not close to accomplishing his goals and what he wants out of his football career yet.”
While Storey highlighted the offensive selections, four defensive players were repeat selections. Har-Ber’s Josh Frazier, who is committed to Alabama, was joined for the second straight year by 6A champion El Dorado’s Bijhon Jackson, an Arkansas commitment, on the defensive line.
Also, West Memphis linebacker Jarvis Cooper and cornerback Jordan Dennis from Fayetteville were repeat selections.
Cabot, the runner-up in 7A, had three selections in running back Zach Launius (who rushed for more than 2,000 yards and 34 touchdowns), safety Jake Ferguson and offensive lineman Heath Pledger.
Jack Kraus, a tight end for 7A champion Bentonville who is committed to Arkansas, was also selected. Kraus was one of two tight ends to make the team, joining Fayetteville’s C.J. O’Grady. North Little Rock junior K.J. Hill was the lone wide receiver.
Launius was joined at running back by Springdale’s Deandre Murray, a repeat selection who is committed to Tulsa, and Lincoln’s Tyler Cummings — who rushed for 2,058 yards and 29 touchdowns, including a 415-yard, six-touchdown effort in a playoff win over Malvern.
Warren’s Jhamahl Bell, Conway’s Colton Jackson, Har-Ber’s Isaac Johnson, North Little Rock’s Curtis Parker joined Pledger on the offensive line.
Jake Hall, a defensive lineman who is committed to Arkansas, was the third Har-Ber standout named to the team. He was joined on the defensive line by his teammate, Frazier, as well as Jackson, Arkadelphia’s Emmanuel Cooper and Jonesboro’s Chuks Ota, who is committed to Arkansas State.
Cooper was joined at linebacker by Jamario Bell from 2A state champion Junction City.
In addition to Dennis and Ferguson, the secondary was made up by Fordyce’s Gary Cross and Pine Bluff Dollarway’s Joshua Liddell.
Toney Hawkins from 5A state champion Morrilton was selected as an all-purpose player, and he was joined by Lonoke’s Blake Mack and Jonesboro’s Denzel Mitchell.
Members of Arkansas’ Super Team, selected in consultation with AP-member sports writers, broadcasters and voters in AP’s weekly high school football poll.
Associated Press Arkansas Super Team
Pos., Player, School
QB: Ty Storey, Charleston
RB: Tyler Cummings, Lincoln
RB: Zach Launius, Cabot
RB: Deandre Murray, Springdale
WR: K.J. Hill, North Little Rock
TE: Jack Kraus, Bentonville
TE: C.J. O’Grady, Fayetteville
OL: Jhamahl Bell, Warren
OL: Colton Jackson, Conway
OL: Isaac Johnson, Har-Ber
OL: Curtis Parker, North Little Rock
OL: Heath Pledger, Cabot
K: Austin McGehee, Pine Bluff
DL: Emmanuel Cooper, Arkadelphia
DL: Josh Frazier, Har-Ber
DL: Jake Hall, Har-Ber
DL: Bijhon Jackson, El Dorado
DL: Chuks Ota, Jonesboro
LB: Jamario Bell, Junction City
LB: Jarvis Cooper, West Memphis
DB: Gary Cross, Fordyce
DB: Jordan Dennis, Fayetteville
DB: Jake Ferguson, Cabot
DB: Joshua Liddell, Pine Bluff Dollarway
All-Purpose: Toney Hawkins, Morrilton
All-Purpose: Blake Mack, Lonoke
All-Purpose: Denzel Mitchell, Jonesboro