Ultimate highlights of Lake Stevens quarterback Jacob Eason.
The current Georgia quarterback is a finalist for the Gatorade Athlete of the Year award, which will be presented Tuesday at the LA Hotel Downtown.
LOS ANGELES —
There is no finer or more luxurious event celebrating high school sports than the Gatorade Athlete of the Year awards show, which this year celebrates its 14th season at The LA Hotel Downtown.
As in the previous 13 years, 12 of the nation's best student-athletes — six boys and six girls — will be honored Tuesday night with one from each gender to be picked as Athlete of the Year.
As usual, there will be a star-studded cast of Gatorade professional athletes to present the awards. Many were honored as preps by Gatorade.
The presenters this year are NFL quarterbacks Cam Newton and Matthew Stafford, and running back Todd Gurley, NBA Rookie of the Year Karl-Anthony Towns, soccer stars Landon Donovan and Abby Wambach, former softball sensation Jenny Finch and Olympians Allyson Felix and April Ross.
Towns and Ross lead a new campaign for the event, a "Play it Forward," program that will bring awareness to the importance of youth sports to communities both physically and emotionally.
To that end, starting in 2016-17, the Gatorade State Players of the Year will chose a local or national youth sports organization which will be awarded a $1,000 grant from Gatorade with the chance to donate even more.
Ross and Towns will introduce the program in a breakfast Tuesday morning, about eight hours before the national sport athletes of the year are honored.
Those athletes are:
, Xavier College Prep (Phoenix, Ariz.)
, Air Academy (US Air Force Academy, Colo.)
, cross country
, Elizabethtown-Lewis Central (Elizabethtown, N.Y.)
, Grayson (Loganville, Ga.),
, Merced (Calif.)
, Union Catholic (Scotch Plains, N.J.)
, track and field
, Lake Stevens (Wash.)
, footballAndrew Hunter
, Loudoun Valley (Purcellville, Va.)
, cross countryJayson Tatum
, Chaminade (St. Louis, Mo.)
Lee (Washington, D.C.), soccerKyle Muller
, Dallas Jesuit (Dallas, Texas)
, baseballMichael Norman
, Vista Murrieta (Murrieta, Calif.)
track and field
MaxPreps host Chris Stonebraker will be on hand Tuesday in Los Angeles for all the Gatorade awards.