(This content was submitted via a user. The MaxPreps editorial staff did not have any say in the order or players. Please leave a comment below for your take.)
1. Andre Rison, WR/RB/QB/TE/S/CB/P/K, Northwestern (Flint) (1982-1985)
He played an amazing eight different positions. ESPN
National High School Football Player of the year (1984). A three time All-State
selection named to Street & Smith’s 10-year All Anniversary team as a
defensive back. An All-State prep point guard in basketball and still ranks as
the school’s all-time assist leader with 636 dish-outs. Rison, Glen Rice, Jeff
Grayer were the nucleus of a team in the mid-80’s that went 79-3 and was ranked
#1 #2 in the country for several years by various national publications
(includes a winning streak of 60
games). In 2009 the basketball dynasty was inducted into The Greater Flint
Sports Hall Of Fame. Rison went on to have 12-year NFL career that included
helping the Green Bay Packers win the 1997 Super Bowl.
2. Mill Coleman, QB, Albion / Harrison (Farmington Hills) (1986-1989)
There was a reason Coleman was called “The Thrill,” and high
school football fans will never forget the electricity that he generated. A
winner who could beat you with his arm or his legs, Coleman led Harrison in three
Class B state title games, of which he won two. He finished his career with
7,464 passing yards, but it was his “big-play” ability on the high school level
that has not been seen since.
3. Tyrone Wheatley, RB, Robichaud (Dearborn Heights) (1987-1990)
From a pure talent level, few players could match the gifts
that Wheatley brought to the football field. With linebacker size and
world-class speed, he was a threat to go the distance every time he touched the
ball. Wheatley finished his career with 70 career touchdowns and 484 points and
went on to success at the University of Michigan and with the NFL's Los Angeles
4. Lamar Woodley, LB, Saginaw (1999-2002)
Woodley had the rare ability to dominate a football game
from the defensive side of the ball and was part of the renaissance of Saginaw
High School football in the late 1990s and early 2000s. In 2002 he was rated
the No. 4 overall recruit in the nation by Rivals.com. He chose the University
of Michigan, where he earned all-American honors and was the Big 10 Defensive
Player of the Year. Woodley continues to make his mark in high school football
in Saginaw through his various philanthropic endeavors.
5. Earl Morrall, QB, Muskegon (1949-1951)
Few quarterbacks can match the legacy of Morrall. In 1951, he
led the Big Reds to a state championship, as he threw for what was then a
school-record 851 yards and 11 touchdowns. Morrall was a nationally-recruited
quarterback. He picked Michigan
State University over the Universities of Michigan and Notre
Dame and led it to the 1955 Rose Bowl title. After college, Morrall had a
21-year NFL career that included winning the 1968 NFL MVP award and being part
of three Super Bowl champion teams.
6. Brad Van Pelt, LB, Owosso (1967-1969)
One of the greatest all-around athletes to ever come out of
Michigan, VanPelt was an all-state quarterback in 1969 who also earned
all-conference honors on defense and all-state honors in basketball and
baseball. He was a three-sport letterman at Michigan State University and a
two-time football all-American who won the Maxwell Trophy. VanPelt went on to a
stellar NFL career and was a five-time Pro Bowl linebacker.
7. Rick Leach, QB, Flint Southwestern Academy (Flint) (1972-1974)
As one of the finest quarterbacks produced in the state,
Leach led one of the greatest
high school teams of all time, the 1974 Flint Southwestern
squad. The team finished with a perfect season, as Leach passed for 1,668 yards
and 23 touchdowns in an era dominated by the ground game. Leach went on to
start at quarterback for four years at the University of Michigan in the golden
era of Wolverine football under Bo Schembechler and was a three-time Heisman
8. Charles Rogers, WR, Saginaw (1997-1999)
While his NFL career left much to be desired, and his
potential may not have been reached in college at Michigan State University,
there is no denying that Rogers was arguably the most dangerous wide receiver
in the history of Michigan high school football. He finished his high school career
with 2,525 career receiving yards and 40 career touchdown receptions.
9. T.J. Duckett, QB/RB/LB, Norrix (Kalamazoo) (1996-1998)
A rare combination of size and speed, Duckett was a Parade
all-American in 1998.
He was also named the National Player of the Year by
Superprep magazine, as he totaled 102 tackles, nine sacks, and four forced fumbles.
On offense, he rushed for 1,623 yards (11.2 yards average) and threw for 920
yards and nine touchdowns. During his junior year, Duckett totaled 140 tackles
and three sacks while accounting for 2,080 total yards and 20 touchdowns. He
went on to play at Michigan State University and was drafted 18th overall in the
NFL draft by the Atlanta Falcons.
10. Jerome Bettis, RB/LB, Mackenzie (Detroit) (1987-1989)
The top player in the state in 1989 and a high school
all-American, Bettis went on to fame with the University of Notre Dame in
college and the Pittsburgh Steelers in the NFL. A dominating linebacker and
fullback in high school, Bettis led Mackenzie to the West Division title in the
Detroit PSL and to a state playoff berth. However, one of his proudest high school
memories was being inducted into the National Honor Society, where he served as
11. Mark Ingram Jr., RB, Grand Blanc / Flint Southwestern Academy (Flint) (2005-2007)
The 2009 Heisman Trophy winner, before attending the
University of Alabama, Ingram enjoyed a sparkling high school career. He transferred
to Southwestern his senior year and opened the 2007 season by establishing a
new Flint rushing record, when he ran for a city-record 319 yards and four
touchdowns (since broken). Ingram ended his senior year with 1,699 yards and 24
touchdowns and currently plays for the New Orleans Saints.
12. Bennie Oosterbaan, DE, Muskegon (1921-1924)
Arguably the first ‘super prep’ athlete from the state of
Michigan, Oosterbaan was an all-state end in football for the Muskegon Big Reds
and was also a basketball and baseball star. At the University of Michigan, he
was a three-time all-American football player, and a two-time all-American
basketball player who led the Big Ten in scoring. He also led the Big Ten in
batting average on the baseball team. Oosterbaan became a successful football
coach, who guided the University of Michigan to the 1948 national championship.
13. Ron Kramer, DE, East Detroit (Eastpointe) (1951-1953)
One of the greatest football players and athletes in University
of Michigan history, Kramer was an all-state player in high school and a
three-time all-American while at Michigan. In 1999, Sports Illustrated named
him the seventh greatest sports figure from the state of Michigan. He played in
the NFL for the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions.
14. Don Coleman, OL/DL, Flint Central (Flint) (1954)
Coleman played only one year of high school football, but it
was memorable, as he earned all-state honors and helped lead Flint Central to a
state championship. He went on to Michigan State University, where he was the
first African-American football player. Although he weighed only 180 pounds,
Coleman was a dominating offensive and defensive lineman who is regarded to this
day as the greatest Michigan State University football player ever. He was also
the first Michigan State football player to have his uniform retired.
15. Brandon Graham, LB, Crockett Tech (Detroit) (2003-2005)
Graham was one of the most decorated high school players in
state history. After making all-PSL in Detroit as a sophomore, he was a
two-time all-state player who also earned numerous all-American honors as a
senior, including being named a captain of the U.S. Army Bowl game. Graham was an
all-American at University of Michigan and was drafted in the first round by
the NFL's Philadelphia Eagles.
16. Kevin Grady, RB, East Grand Rapids (Grand Rapids) (2001-2004)
He was the most productive back ever in Michigan high school
football. He scored a state record 151 career touchdowns and is also the
all-time rushing leader in the state with 8,431 career yards. Grady helped lead
East Grand Rapids to a 49-3 record and two Division 3 State Championship in his
17. Paul Krause, WR/DB, Bendle (Burton) (1957-1959)
Krause was an all-state football, basketball, and baseball
player at Bendle. He played both wide receiver and defensive back at University
of Iowa and was an eight-time Pro Bowl player for the Minnesota Vikings. A
member of the professional football Hall of Fame, Krause holds the NFL record for
interceptions in a career with 81.
18. Steve Smith, QB, Swartz Creek / Grand Blanc (1978-1980)
A high school all-American quarterback known for his
outstanding, sprinter speed, Smith was an underrated passer. In 1979, he passed
for a then Flint-area record 1,926 yards and 26 touchdowns in the time before
spread offenses. Smith led Grand Blanc to a 9-1 record in 1980 and a Flint-area
record 462 points. He went on to University of Michigan, where he was a
three-year starter at quarterback who led the Wolverines to a pair of Rose
Bowls and set what was then the single-season passing yardage record.
19. Carl Banks, LB, Beecher (Flint) (1976-1979)
A dominating defender and all-state player for the
Buccaneers, Banks is one of the greatest high school players ever from the city
of Flint. He went on to an all-American career at Michigan State University and
was selected all Big 10 three times. Banks played 12 seasons in the NFL and was
part of two Super Bowl championships teams with the New York Giants along with
being named a member of the all-decade team for the 1980s.
20. Jake Long, OT, Lapeer East (Lapeer) (2000-2002)
Long was a dominant blocker in high school. During his
three-year career, he never allowed a quarterback sack and graded 90% or higher
each year. At defensive end, he totaled 213 career tackles and added 11
quarterback sacks. Long was an all-
American offensive tackle at the University of Michigan and
has played for the Miami Dolphins and the St. Louis Rams during his six-year
21. Joe De Lamielleure, OL, St. Clement (Center Line) (1967-1969)
One of the finest offensive guards to ever play the game,
DeLamielleure was a six-time Pro Bowl player for the Buffalo Bills after
graduating from Michigan State University. He was part of the “Electric
Company” offensive line that blocked for O.J. Simpson.
22. Drew Stanton, QB, Harrison (Farmington Hills) (2000-2001)
Stanton led Harrison to back-to-back 14-0 seasons and two
state titles during his two years at the helm. A prep all-American and
all-state selection, Stanton finished his high school career completing 234 of
357 passes (65%) for 5,293 yards and 58 touchdowns. He went on to star at
Michigan State University and later played for the Detroit Lions.
23. Terrance Taylor, DL, Muskegon (2001-2004)
Few defensive players were as talented at Taylor. A
four-year varsity player, Taylor totaled 100 tackles as a freshman and had 25
sacks over his final three years. As a senior, he helped lead Muskegon to the
state title. In the 2005 all-star game, he scored two defensive touchdowns.
Taylor played at University of Michigan and later in the NFL with Carolina and
24. Amari Coleman, WR/CB, New Lothrop (2011-2013)
Coleman had the rare ability to dominate a football game
from the offensive and defensive side of the ball. The two time All-State utility
player set school records in
yards per carry (22.2) and yards per reception (25.8) in
essence, he scored every other time he touched the ball on offence. Coleman led
his team to three straight undefeated regular seasons during his high school
career. With 4.39 40 speed he was Instrumental in helping the Hornets win the
2013 MHSAA Regional Championship, scoring four touchdowns on just five carries
in a58-22 win over Ottawa Lake-Whitford for the Division 8 Regional final.
Coleman was selected as 2013 Flint area Dream Team Player of the Year and will
go on to play at Central Michigan University.
25. Jon Runyan, OT, Carman-Ainsworth (Flint) (1995-1997)
Runyan was a standout in both track & field and football
for the Cavaliers. A dominating offensive lineman, he went on to star at the
University of Michigan and then in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles.
26. Drew Henson, QB, Brighton (1995-1997)
Few stars shined as brightly on the baseball field and
football field than Henson’s while at Brighton. Along with hitting legendary,
tape-measure home runs, Henson was one of the top prep quarterbacks in the
nation. He threw for 2,072 yards in 1996 and finished his career with 5,662
yards. Henson played in college at University of Michigan and then played pro
football with the Dallas Cowboys and pro baseball with the New York Yankees.
27. Courtney Hawkins, QB/RB/WR, Beecher (Flint) (1984-1987)
Hawkins started at quarterback as a freshman at Beecher in
1984, also playing running back and receiver. Top ten in career rushing yards
in Genesee County History with 3,202 career yards. A second-round pick out of
Michigan State who played nine seasons at receiver with Pittsburgh and Tampa
28. Keith Nichol, QB, Lowell (2003-2006)
Nichol enjoyed one of the most productive high school
careers by a Michigan prep quarterback. As a sophomore, he passed for 2,125
yards and 26 touchdowns in leading the Red Arrows to the 2004 Division 2 state
title. As a senior, Nichol passed for 2,225 yards and 31 touchdowns. He
finished his career with a record of 33-3; 6,550 passing yards; 76 passing
touchdowns; 3,100 rushing yards; and 58 rushing touchdowns.
29. Greg Jennings, WR/RB/OLB/DB, Kalamazoo Central (Kalamazoo) (1999-2001)
Was All-Conference in three sports-football, basketball, and
track. Jennings played wide receiver, running back, outside linebacker and
defensive back as a three-time letterman for the football team. He was listed
on the “Fab 50” rankings of the Detroit Free Press as a senior.
Jennings finished seventh in voting for Mr. Basketball of Michigan in 2000-01
and scored a school record 50 points in a losing effort against Benton Harbor
as a senior. Jennings caught two touchdowns passes for Green Bay in Super Bowl
XLV in the Packer’s 31-25 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.30. Mike Koster, WR, Lowell (2002-2004)
Even though Lowell is known for running the ball, few
receivers were as efficient as Koster. He holds the career record for
receptions in the state with 214. A member of the 2002 state championship team,
Koster caught 86 passes for 1,305 yards that year. He is second in career
receiving yards with 3,666 and third in career touchdown receptions with 42.
31. Kirk Ellsworth, RB, Goodrich (2002-2004)
Ellsworth set a record that will be hard to top when he
scored 379 points in 2004. That total is 73 points higher than the next-highest
point total. Ellsworth scored a state-record 32 touchdowns in 2004, kicked 57
PATs, scored on a pair of two-point conversions, and kicked two field goals.
For his career, Ellsworth totaled 632 points,
good for fifth place all-time.
32. Terry Eurick, RB, Arthur Hill (Saginaw) (1971-1973)
Eurick was an all-state running back while part of the 1973
Arthur Hill team, a team that is thought to be the finest ever in Michigan high
school football. Eurick rushed for 984 yards and scored 20 touchdowns. He went
on to play at University of Notre Dame, where he was a tri-captain on the 1977
National Championship team, and he graced the cover of Sports Illustrated after
Notre Dame’s win over University of Texas in the Cotton Bowl.
33. Paul Walderzak, OT, Arthur Hill (Saginaw) (1971-1973)
Like Eurick, Walderzak was a member of the 1973 Arthur Hill
team that outscored its opponents 433-0. Walderzak was an all-state tackle, and
he went on to play tackle in for University of Nebraska. After college, he
returned to Michigan, has coached Standish-Sterling Central High School for the
past 36 years, and is a member of the Michigan High School Football Coaches
Hall of Fame.
34. Tony Dungy, QB, Parkside (Jackson) (1971-1973)
Although he is better known as the Super Bowl winning coach
of the Indianapolis Colts, Dungy was an outstanding high school athlete. He was
a three-year starter at quarterback and was all-state in both football and basketball.
He later starred at the University of Minnesota before a lengthy NFL career as
a defensive back.
35. Brandon Carr, CB/WR, Carman-Ainsworth (Flint) (2001-2003)
Carr a fearless First-Team All-Big 9 Conference performer as
a senior DB…Caught 24
passes for 431 yards and four TDs as a WR, and tallied 53
tackles with two interceptions. He would go on to star at Grand Valley State to
lead the Lakers to back to back NCAA Division 2 National Championships. He
received the Defensive Back of the Year honor his senior year. Carr was drafted
by the Kansas City Chiefs where he spent his first three years of his NFL
career, after his contract ended with the Chiefs Carr signed with the Dallas Cowboys.
36. Kirk Cousins, QB, Holland Christian (Holland) (2005-2007)
Cousins three star Rivals recruit, finished his high school
football career with 3,204 passing yards and 40 touchdowns. He went on to star
at Michigan State University, leading the Spartans over the Georgia Bulldogs in
the 2012 Outback Bowl. Cousins went on to be drafted by Washington Redskins.
37. Braylon Edwards, WR, Bishop Gallagher (Harper Woods) (1998-2000)
Edwards had 63 receptions for 740 yards and eight touchdowns
his senior year in high school which was enough to have the University of
Michigan come calling for the 6ft. 3in freak of nature. During his senior year at
Michigan he set Michigan season records for receptions (97) and receiving yards
(1,330), and career records for 252 receptions, 3,541 yards, and 39 touchdowns,
a Big Ten record. Edwards eight year NFL career has included stints with the
Cleveland Browns, New York Jets, 49ers, and Seahawks.
38. Chris Robinson, RB, Ovid-Elsie (Elsie) (2006-2009)
Robinson was a small-school phenom who scored 99 career touchdowns
(fourth-best in state history). He finished his career with 604 total points
and scored 250 points in 2009. He achieved the third-highest rushing season
ever in 2008 with 2,844 yards and led Ovid-Elsie to the Division 5 state final.
Robinson also totaled a
state-record 27 straight 100-yard rushing games.
39. Sam Sword, LB, Arthur Hill (Saginaw) (1991-1993)
An all-state linebacker, Sword was part of Arthur Hill’s
1991 state championship
team and 1992 state runner-up team. He went to University of
Michigan, where he was part of the Wolverine’s 1998 National Championship team
and finished his career third on the all-time tackles list with 265. Sword also
played four years in the NFL with the Colts and the Raiders.
40. Calvin O'Neal, LB, Saginaw (1969-1971)
A two-time all-state linebacker, O’Neal averaged 14 tackles
per game his senior year and was MVP of the Saginaw Valley League. He went on
to be a two-time all-Big 10 linebacker at University of Michigan, where he was
team captain in 1976. He is a member of the Saginaw County Hall of Fame.
41. Brett Lesniak, RB, Dowagiac (1996-1997)
Lesniak was the centerpiece of a Dowagiac team that
dominated football in southwestern Michigan in the mid-1990s. In 1996, he
rushed for 2,239 yards and scored 37 touchdowns, as the Chieftains reached the
state semifinals. Lesniak also set a school record with a 374-yard rushing
game. For his two-year varsity career he totaled 4,418 yards and scored 70
42. Steve Marriuci, QB, Iron Mountain (1971-1973)
The Upper Peninsula has produced plenty of talented players,
with “Mooch” being perhaps the best quarterback to ever come out of the North
country. Marriuci was an all-Upper Peninsula football and basketball player. A
three-time all-American in college, Marriuci led Northern Michigan University
to the 1975 Division 2 National Championship.
43. Eric Ball, RB, Ypsilanti (1982-1984)
Ball was a rare combination of size and speed at running
back. At 6'1" and 215 pounds, Ball possessed breakaway speed and was a
high school all-American along with being an all-state back for Ypsilanti. He
went on to play college football at UCLA, where tied a Rose Bowl record with
four touchdowns against University of Iowa in 1986 before playing six years in
the NFL with Cincinnati.
44. Marvin Wright, QB/DB, Arthur Hill (Saginaw) (1990-1992)
Arthur Hill was one of the premier teams in the state in the
early 1990s, led by the dangerous Wright at quarterback. An all-state
quarterback who could win with his arm or his legs, Wright led Arthur Hill to a
state title in 1991 and a state runner-up
finish in 1992. He then went on to play defensive back at
Michigan State University.
45. Mark Catlin, QB/DB, Lowell (2000-2002)
Catlin was one of the finest two-way players in Lowell
history. Blessed with outstanding athletic ability, he was at his best in big
games, as he led Lowell to the 2002 Division 2 state title. He passed for 2,634
yards in 2002 and as a defensive back finished fourth all-time in the state
with 24 career interceptions.
46. Richie Jordan, RB, Fennville (1962-1964)
The “Fennville Flash” was not just a basketball legend,
although in that sport, the 5'7" Jordan averaged 44.1 points per game and was
a high school all-American. However, he was also a football standout, who
earned high school all-American football honors and was a three-time all-state
player. Jordan set a career rushing record with 5,132 yards and scored 47
career touchdowns in an era when teams played a nine-game schedule with no
playoffs. He also ran for 2,010 yards as a senior.
47. Antonio Gates, TE, Central (Detroit) (1998-2000)
Gates excelled at both basketball and football, But it was
in basketball where Gates had the most success as he led Central High School to
Michigan’s Class-A Final Four in his junior year. As a senior, he averaged 27 points
and 12 rebounds a game, and led Central all the way to the Michigan state
championship. Gates would go on to play basketball for Kent State where he
averaged 20.6 points a game. After being told by NBA scouts, he was a “tweener”
Gates arranged a workout with San Diego Chargers, now over 600 career catches
later Gates has become only the fifth tight end in NFL history to catch that
many passes. The moral of the story, “ You can’t always get what you want, but
if you try sometimes you get what you need!”
48. Tom Devine, OE/LB, Lumen Christi (Jackson) (1968-1969)
The Titans have produced a number of state champions over
the years, but Devine is without a doubt the finest Titan of all time. He was a
hulking offensive end and linebacker who dominated on both sides of the
football. He was voted the United Press International (UPI) Player of the Year
as both a junior and as a senior. Devine went on to play at University of Notre
Dame, but injuries short-circuited his career.
49. Robert Jackson, RB, Allendale (1973-1976)
Jackson put up some gaudy numbers during his senior season in
1976, when he scored 217 points in nine games, an average of four touchdowns
per game. He went on to success at Central Michigan University before a lengthy
NFL career as a safety with the Cincinnati Bengals.
50. Dave Yarema, QB, Brother Rice (Bloomfield Hills) (1980-1981)
Yarema was the premier quarterback in the state in the early
1980s. As a junior, he led Brother Rice to the Class A state title and earned
all-state honors the following year. He went on to start at Michigan State
University as a freshman and is still in the top 10 in many Spartan passing
categories.51. Paul Jokisch, WR, Brother Rice (Bloomfield Hills) (1980-1981)
The 6'8", 240-pound Jokisch teamed up with Yarema to
form one of the most imposing pitch-and-catch duos in state history. The two combined
on a 38-yard touchdown pass for the only points in the 1980 Class A state title
game, where Brother Rice defeated Dearborn Fordson 6-0. Jokisch was the No. 1
recruit in 1981 and went on to a career as both a basketball and a football
player for the Wolverines.
52. Thomas Rawls, RB, Northern (Flint) (2008-2010)
Flint Northern never imagined the impact that one player
could have on its program. Vikings running back Thomas Rawls wasn’t even a
starter at the beginning of his junior year. The 5-foot-10, 215 pound Rawls
blossomed into a phenomenal force as a senior. Rawls was unanimously selected to
the All-State team after rushing for 1,586 yards ranking 12th
Genesee County History and scoring 19 touchdowns. Rawls also holds the Flint
area single game rushing record of 396 yards and three touchdowns in a 36-28
victory over Bay City Central. The highly sought after Rawls was recruited by
University of Michigan.
53. Pete Metzelaars, TE, Portage Central (Portage) (1975-1977)
At 6'8", Metzelaars was a dominant receiver in high school
who earned all-state honors and led his team to the 1977 Class A state title
game. Overlooked by major colleges, Metzelaars went on to an all-American
career at Wabash College in Indiana in both basketball and football. He then
played 16 years in the NFL, primarily for the Buffalo Bills, where he was a
three-time Pro-Bowl player and a member of four Super Bowl teams.
54. Max Bullough, LB, St. Francis (Traverse City) (2007-2009)
Bullough was a three-year starter and two-time all-state
selection who helped St.
Francis win back-to-back state titles in 2008-09. He was
Division 7 Player of the Year as a senior, when he totaled 137 tackles, four
sacks, and three interceptions. He also rushed for 466 yards (11.7 yards/carry)
and four touchdowns and was a high school all-American linebacker. He totaled
102 tackles as a junior and 97.5 as a sophomore.55. Sonny Grandelius, RB, Muskegon Heights (1944-1946)
The Muskegon Heights Tigers were a major high school
football power in the 1940s, and Grandelius was one of the best Tigers ever. He
led his team to the 1945 state title as a quarterback, and in 1946 he switched
to fullback, earned all-state honors, and again led the Tigers to a state
title. Grandelius went on to Michigan State University, where he earned
all-American honors as a senior, when he rushed for 1,023 yards.
56. Nick Perry, DE, Mackenzie (Detroit) / King (Detroit) (2004-2007)
As a senior at Detroit King, Perry recorded a state record
36 sacks along with 147 tackles, as he helped lead King to the Division 1 state
title. As a tight end, he caught eight touchdown passes. During his junior year
at Mackenzie, Perry totaled 75 tackles and 11 sacks. He was named the MVP of
the all-state Dream Team and was a first-team all-USA Today pick. Perry went on
to be a an all-Pac 10 selection at University of Southern California and was
drafted in the first round by the Green Bay Packers.
57. Reggie Mackenzie, OL, Highland Park (1965-1967)
The finest high school player ever produced at Highland Park,
Mackenzie was a three-year starter at the University of Michigan and was an
all-American in 1971. He went on to a 13-year NFL career, primarily with the
Buffalo Bills, where he was a two-time Pro Bowl player. Mackenzie is a member
of both the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame.
58. Todd Lyght, WR/DB, Powers Catholic (Flint) (1985-1986)
Lyght earned all-state and all-American honors his senior
season. As a receiver, he caught 34 passes for 887 yards and 11 touchdowns,
while at defensive back, he intercepted 10 passes. A two-time all-American at
University of Notre Dame, Lyght was a part of Notre Dame’s 1988 National
Championship team. He was drafted fifth overall by the Los Angeles Rams in 1991
and was a two-time Pro Bowl player and member of the 1999 St. Louis Rams Super
Bowl championship team.
59. Booker Moore, RB, Flint Southwestern Academy (Flint) (1974-1976)
One of the greatest running backs to ever come out of Flint,
Moore broke every rushing record in the city during his high school career. A
two-time all-stater, he broke his own record as a senior when he rushed for
1,263 yards and led the Colts to a 9-0 record and the ranking as the state’s
No. 1 team. Moore played at Penn State University, where he became the school’s
fifth-leading career rusher. He was the No. 1 draft choice of the Buffalo Bills.60. Mark Bramer, TE, Traverse City Central (Traverse City) (1973-1975)
An all-state tight end, Bramer helped lead the Trojans to a
No. 1 ranking and to the Class A final in the first year of the state playoffs
in 1975. He went on to enjoy a productive career at Michigan State University
and then played in the NFL for the Buffalo Bills.
61. Brad Jones, TE/LB, East Lansing (2001-2003)
Jones was a dominant presence at linebacker with his
combination of size and speed. One of the Lansing area’s best linebackers ever,
he was also a leading receiver in the area as a senior and was runner-up as the
state player of the year. Jones was a standout in college at University of
Colorado and is currently playing in the NFL for the Green Bay Packers.
62. Ron Johnson, WR, Muskegon (2003-2006)
Ro-Jo was a big-play receiver who led his team to perfect
14-0 seasons and state titles in both 2004 and in 2006. He totaled over 1,600
all-purpose yards in 2006, as he caught 26 passes for 700 yards (26.9
yards/reception) and seven touchdowns. The top recruit in Michigan his senior
year, he picked USC over Texas, Florida, Michigan, Michigan State, and Notre
Dame. He was selected in the 6th round of the 2011 NFL draft by the San
Francisco 49ers.63. Ricky Bryant, WR, Harrison (Farmington Hills) (1995-1998)
Bryant was a big-play receiver, who finished his career with
132 receptions for 2,665 yards and 33 career touchdown receptions. In the 1998
Division 2 state title game against Hudsonville, he hauled in six passes for
146 yards and a pair of touchdowns and also added an interception. He was part
of two state title teams. Bryant then played at Ohio State University and Hofstra
University and won a Super Bowl ring with the New England Patriots.
64. Jason Babin, DE, Paw Paw (1998-2000)
Babin lettered in football and wrestling. In football, he
was a two-time team Defensive MVP, and was an All- Kalamazoo Valley Association
first team choice as a senior. In wrestling, he was the state champion as a
senior. He played his college football at Western Michigan University, where he
earned First team All-American honors. Babin NFL career includes playing for
six different teams, (Texans, Seahawks, Chiefs, Titans, Jaguars, Eagles). He
had his best pro season with the Eagles in 2011 recording 40 tackles and 18
65. Tony Boles, RB, Glenn (Westland) (1983-1985)
Boles was one of the premier players in the state, who
combined good size with outstanding speed and cutting ability to earn all-state
honors. He went on to success as a two-time all-Big 10 running back with the
University of Michigan Wolverines and was the team MVP in 1989. Boles played in
the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys.
66. Thomas Johnson, LB, Mackenzie (Detroit) (1979-1981)
“Pepper” Johnson was a dominating linebacker, who was an
all-state and all-American selection. He went on to play four years at Ohio
State University, where he totaled 379 career tackles and was an all-American
in 1985. Johnson played 12 years in the NFL and was part of two Super Bowl
championships with the New York Giants. After his playing career ended, he was
part of three additional Super Bowl championships as a defensive coach with the
New England Patriots.
67. Larry Foote, LB, Pershing (Detroit) (1995-1997)
Foote was an all-state linebacker, who was considered one of
the top recruits in the state his senior year. He went on to star at the
University of Michigan, where he earned all-American honors and was the Big 10
Defensive Player of the Year. He earned two Super Rings as a professional with
the Pittsburgh Steelers.
68. Pete Chryplewicz, TE, Sterling Heights Stevenson (Sterling Heights) (1989-1991)
A dominating presence at tight end as a blocker and as a receiver,
Chryplewicz was the No.1-ranked recruit following the 1991 season. He went on
to play at University of Notre Dame and later for the Detroit Lions in the NFL.
69. Luis Sharpe, OT, Southwestern (Detroit) (1976-1978)
Southwestern was not just a basketball school, and Sharpe was
not only the premier lineman in Michigan but was also a prep all-American who
went on to play for UCLA. He then played in the NFL for the Cardinals for 13
seasons and was a three-time Pro
70. Kerry Smith, RB, Forest Hills Northern (Grand Rapids) (1977-1978)
An all-state running back in 1978, Smith helped lead
Northern to the Class C state title. In that state title game, he rushed for
278 yards to break O.J. Simpson’s Silverdome rushing record. He went on to play
running back at the University of Michigan.
71. Dan Lato, RB, Forest Park (Crystal Falls) (1976-1978)
Lato was arguably the finest running back to ever come out
of the Upper Peninsula. In 1977, he scored 206 points, and in 1978 he scored 212
points, as he led Forest Park to back-to-back state final appearances. Lato
ended his career with 522 points.
72. Mike Dumas, DB, Lowell (1984-1986)
Dumas was a dominating player on both sides of the ball but
was best known for his hard-hitting style on defense. He went on to star at the
University of Indiana and played for eight years in the NFL as a safety, mostly
for the Houston Oilers and the San Diego Chargers.
73. David Bowens, LB, St. Mary Prep (Orchard Lake) (1992-1994)
Bowens was a dynamic linebacker and the top player in the
state in 1994, when he helped the Eaglets win the Class C state title. He went
on to play at University of Michigan and at Western Illinois University before
playing over a decade in the NFL with several teams.
74. Ray Bentley, LB, Hudsonville (1977-1978)
An all-state linebacker, Bentley went on to Central Michigan
University, where he was a two-time all-MAC linebacker. He was voted MVP of the
MAC in 1982. He won a USFL championship with the Michigan Panthers in 1983 and
later played six seasons for the Buffalo Bills of the NFL, with whom he played
in two Super Bowls. Bentley has been a football color analyst since 1994 and
with ESPN since 2003.
75. Doug Carsten, RB, Byron (1978-1980)
One of the greatest small-school running backs in Genesee County
History. Led the Eagles to three straight Mid-State Athletic Conference
Championships, going a perfect 9-0 in 1980. A three time Mid-State Conference
selection as well as unanimous All-State pick, Carsten finished his high school
career with over 3,000
rushing yards.76. Darren Powers, RB, Genesee (1978-1980)
Powers a premier player in the state of Michigan in the late
1970s. An outstanding running back who was a two time All-Mid State Athletic
Conference selection as well as Associated time in Genesee County for yards in
a season with (1,537). He was a Press Class D All-State pick his senior year.
Powers ranks 14th
final game as a senior, Powers amassed one of the
highest rushing efforts in Genesee County History with 331 yards on 29 carries against
Whitmore Lake.77. John Breasbois, QB, Merrill (1997-1999)
Merrill football was at the heart of the run-and-shoot
offensive revolution that began to change the face of high school football in
Michigan in the mid-1990s. Breasbois totaled 7,216 career passing yards, as
Merrill operated out of four and five-receiver sets. In 1999, he passed for a
then-record 3,2776 yards and led Merrill to the state semifinal. He completed
31 of 50 passes for 465 yards in that semifinal game against Traverse City St.
Francis.78. J.T. Jones, WR, Ithaca (1999-2001)
While Ithaca has produced numerous standout quarterbacks,
few Yellowjackets or receivers in state history can match the production of
Jones. He holds both the career (46) and single-season (26) records for touchdown
passes caught. Jones is fifth in career receptions with 172 and has the
third-highest single-season mark with 93 receptions in 2001. He is also third
in career receiving yards (3,190) and has the sixth-highest single-season mark
with 1,457 in 2000.79. Roger Emmendorfer, RB, New Lothrop (2003-2006)
Emmendorfer was the catalyst of some high-powered New Lothrop
offenses. In 2006, he totaled 227 points, as he scored 26 touchdowns, kicked
four field goals, added 47 PATs, and scored on six two-point conversions.
Emmendorfer finished his
career with 512 points and helped to lead the Hornets to the
2006 Division 8 state title.80. Terry McDaniel, WR/RB, Saginaw (1980-1982)
A versatile speedster, McDaniel totaled 1,582 yards of total
offense as a senior and was heavily recruited by Michigan and by Michigan
State. McDaniel has sprinter speed, and he won state titles in the 100- (10.46
seconds) and 200-meter dashes (21.20 seconds). He was an all-SEC performer at University
of Tennessee as a defensive back and was drafted by the Oakland Raiders in the
first round of the 1988 draft. He was a five-time Pro Bowl player, who finished
his career with 35
interceptions.81. Jason Fracassa, QB, Sterling Heights Stevenson (Sterling Heights) (2006-2009)
The all-time passing king in Michigan high school football, Fracassa
amassed numbers that will be hard to top. In 2009, he set the single-single
passing yardage mark with 4,433 yards. He finished his career with 10,615
passing yards, which is 2,709 yards more than the number-two passer.
82. Muhsin Muhammad, WR/LB, Waverly (Lansing) (1992-1994)
Muhammad excelled in athletic, earning three letters in
football. He not only defined himself as a threat as receiver, but also as an
All-State linebacker and running back. Muhammad enrolled into Michigan State University.
He would break out in 1995 under Nick Saban with 50 catches for 867 yards. He
would also go on to have a stellar NFL career playing for the Carolina Panthers
and Chicago Bears.
83. Don Robinson, RB, Genesee (1981-1983)
Robinson's good speed with outstanding power made him one of
the top high school running backs in the state of Michigan in 1983. His biggest
asset was his strength, with a bench press of 300 pounds Robinson was nearly
impossible to bring down. He led the Wolves to a 1983 Mid-State Athletic Conference
Championship, on his way to becoming, a United Press International Class D
All-State selection. Robinson only played in eight games his senior year,
missing a game due to illness. He had three 200-plus games, with yards in a
season total of nearly 1,200 yards. In one game, Robinson rambled for an unbelievable
317 yards on 34 carries.84. Rick Granata, RB, Imlay City (1991-1993)
Granata had a productive career that was capped in 1993,
when he led the Spartans to the Class B final. Granata rushed for 5,655 yards during
his career and finished with 553 career points. During the 1993 season he
rushed for 2,783 yards.85. Noah Herron, RB, Mattawan (1996-1999)
Herron was the most productive running back to come out of
southwestern Michigan. He finished his career with 5,544 yards and totaled 552 points.
He went on to play at Northwestern University, where he was an all-Big 10
player and left as the fifth all-time rusher in school history. Herron later
played in the NFL for the Steelers and for the Packers.86. Alex Niznak, QB, Ithaca (2008-2010)
A two-time all-state selection, Niznak led Ithaca to a
perfect 14-0 season in 2010, as he passed for 2,731 yards and 31 touchdowns
while rushing for 1,161 yards and 21 touchdowns. He set a state finals record
with five touchdowns, as he ran for 138 yards and passed for 251 in the title
game. As a junior, he passed for 2,077 yards and 22 touchdowns while running
for 1,637 yards and scoring 28 touchdowns in leading Ithaca to the state semifinal.
87. Brian Pruitt, RB, Arthur Hill (Saginaw) (1988-1990)
Pruitt was a three-year, two-way starter who played defensive
end and fullback. At Central Michigan University in 1994, he became the first
Chippewa to earn first-team Division 1 all-American honors. That season, he was
MVP of the MAC, as he rushed for a school record 1,890 yards and scored 22
touchdowns. Pruitt holds MAC and school records for rushing yards in a game with
356, and he also scored a school-record five touchdowns in one game.
88. Dave Von Behren, QB, Frankenmuth (1973-1975)
In the early 1970s, before the era of teams throwing the
ball all over the field, Von Behren piloted a Frankenmuth offense that was
ahead of its time. He was at his best in the 1974 season, when he passed for
2,589 yards in nine games. For his career, he totaled 5,601 yards, which is
still a top-20 all-time mark.89. Cooper Rush, QB, Catholic Central (Lansing) (2009-2011)
Few high school quarterbacks ever had a game like Rush did
in the 2011 playoffs against Dowagiac. He completed a state-record 20 passes in
a row and threw for five second-quarter touchdowns enroute to a state-record
541 yards and eight touchdowns. He finished the 2011 season with 4,002 yards
passing, the second-
highest total in state history. For his career, Rush passed
for 7,247 yards, good for fourth place on the career list.
90. Dave Blackmer, PK, Harrison (Farmington Hills) (1981-1982)
Blackmer was one of the most successful high school kickers
in state history. He holds the state record for field goals in a season with 16
and finished fourth for field goals in a career with 27. He also held the record
for longest field goal for 13 years after a 55-yard effort in 1981 vs. Farmington.91. Fred Russell, RB, Romulus (1996-1998)
Although Romulus was known as a basketball school, Russell
made a huge impact on the football field, as he totaled 5,087 yards rushing. He
capped his career by rushing for 2,473 yards as a senior. Romulus experienced
its finest season that year, when it went 10-1 and reached the Class BB
regional final, where it dropped a 41-40 thriller to DeWitt. Russell played
college football at University of Iowa, where he twice rushed for over 1,000
yards in a season.92. Tim Shaw, RB, Clarenceville (Livonia) (1998-2001)
An underrated football player, Shaw is second in career
points scored by a Michigan high school player with 786 and is one of only two
players to score over 700 career points. He also had the second- and
third-highest single season point totals in state history (306 in 2001 and 288
in 2000). He is second in career rushing with 7,813 yards. Shaw was an academic
all-American linebacker at Pennsylvania State University and is currently playing
for the Tennessee Titans in his seventh NFL season.
93. Dan Bass, LB, Bath (1974-1975)
Bass was a tackling machine and earned all-state honors in
1976. At Michigan State
University, Bass was a two-time all-Big 10 player and was
team MVP during the 1979 season and is the all-time leader in tackles for the
Spartans. Bass went on to play in the Canadian Football League, where he was a
six-time CFL all-star and a member of the 1987 Grey Cup champion team.
94. Gilbert Brown, DL, Mackenzie (Detroit) (1987-1989)
Nicknamed “ The Gravedigger” during his NFL playing days for
Green Bay Packers,
Brown was digging graves for opponents even as early as high
school. He recorded 189 tackles and 19 sacks during his career. His senior year
culminated in all-state honors, Brown also lettered in track, competing in the
shot put. He played his college ball at the University of Kansas and went on to
have a NFL career with the Packers winning a Super Bowl in 1996.
95. Mike McFadden, DL, Heritage (Saginaw) (2000-2001)
McFadden was a defensive standout who earned all-state
honors both as a junior and as a senior. He totaled 98 tackles as a junior and
117 tackles as a senior before heading to Grand Valley State University, where
set a number of school records. McFadden was one of the finest D2 defensive
lineman in the nation during the 2005 and 2006 seasons and was a two-time Gene
Upshaw award winner as the top lineman in D2 football.96. Gary Van Elst, FB/LB, Thornapple Kellogg (Middleville) (1965-1967)
Van Elst was a battering ram of a football player who
dominated on both sides of the football. He was named the UPI High School Player
of the Year for Michigan in 1967 and went on to play defensive tackle at
Michigan State University. He also held the state shot put record until T.J.
Duckett broke it in 1998.97. Keith Bartynski, RB, Nouvel Catholic Central (Saginaw) (1995-1997)
Bartynski was one of the most successful running backs in
Michigan high school history. During his three years at Nouvel, he rushed for
6,336 yards. His best season was 1997, when he rushed for 2,553 yards.
98. Jay Achterhoff, OL, Muskegon (1970-1971)
Achterhoff anchored the offensive line for the unbeaten
Muskegon team of 1971 that won the Class A state champion. He earned all-state
honors and was selected the state Player of the Year in 1971. He went on to
play at University of Notre Dame and was a member of the 1973 National
Championship team before playing in the NFL for the Miami Dolphins. Achterhoff
gained fame when he was credited with the sack by Dan “Rudy” Ruettiger in the famous
“Rudy” play against Georgia Tech.99. Tony Scheffler, WR/TE, Chelsea (1998-2000)
An all-state wide receiver in 2000, Scheffler set school
records with 67 receptions for 1,340 yards and 16 touchdowns. He went on to be
a two-time all-Mid American Conference tight end at Western Michigan University
and was a John Mackey Award finalist before moving on to the NFL with the
Denver Broncos and the Detroit Lions.
100. Ryan Cunningham, RB, Fulton (Middleton) (1992-1995)
A bruising running back, Cunningham rushed for 5,337 yards
during his career. He was also a state-champion wrestler who was a three-time
all-American at Central Michigan University and finished with 104 career wins.