Video: 2018-19 MaxPreps Male Athlete of the Year
New York's Joe Girard III honored after winning basketball, football state titles.
Joe Girard III
is a two-time New York Gatorade Player of the Year, two-time MaxPreps All-American, two-time football state champion and a basketball state champion.
He caps off his incredible high school career with one more accolade — 2018-19 MaxPreps Male High School Athlete of the Year.
The 6-foot-2 Syracuse basketball signee earned the honor after a monster senior year that saw him score 1,457 points and lead Glens Falls (N.Y.)
to its first state championship on the hardwood.
On the gridiron this season, the quarterback guided the Indians to their second state championship in three seasons.
"It meant everything (winning a state title)," Girard said. "I was able to help bring Glens Falls their first state title in football as a sophomore and we won it again this year. I just had one thing left to do before I graduated. I had to do it. Winning the first state title in basketball and then winning the federation title on top of that, it meant the most to me."
Girard shattered the
state basketball scoring mark with 4,763 career points, passing the 2,946 points from 2009 Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.) graduate and current Los Angeles Lakers guard Lance Stephenson. Girard's finished 10th on high school basketball's all-time scoring list.
just crazy," Girard said about being the 10th all-time leading scorer. "Especially
being from New York where you are only allowed to play a set number of
games each season. It is kind of amazing, definitely a huge credit to my
teammates, my family, my coaches and really the whole Glens Falls
community for supporting us and allowing us the ability to play basketball in the fashion
we did. Most of that accolade goes to them, honestly."
His stats aren't the only thing that sets Girard apart. He's a dog on the court. He's a winner. He has a competitive edge, that win-at-all-costs mentality.
"I was born to win. That is what my coaches instilled in me at a young age and a lot of people say they can see it," he said. "I hate losing, it fuels me to win. Even in pickup games I can't stand to lose."
Known primarily for his basketball prowess, Girard was a lethal threat on the football field as well this year. Passing for 314 yards and producing four touchdowns in the state championship game, he led the Indians to a 55-32 victory over previously unbeaten Batavia.
He averaged 243 passing yards per game while completing 62.5 percent of his throws. He tallied 3,162 yards and 37 touchdowns through the air, ran for 419 yards and 13 more touchdowns, and added three punt return scores.
The three-year starter at quarterback finished his career with 6,715 passing yards and 87 touchdowns through the air. He also accounted for 29 rushing touchdowns, six punt return scores and three interceptions returned for touchdowns over the course of his football career.
Committed to Syracuse to play basketball, Girard didn't completely close the door on a return to the football field.
"Before my junior year of high school is when I considered both. Tulane, UMass and Penn State recruited me in both sports," he said. "I still love playing football and at one point I gave strong consideration to playing both sports. Right now, I am 100 percent committed to basketball, but I can't speak for what the future holds."
While Girard III's resume was stood out, the finalists for the award put together extremely impressive seasons.
led Jackson Prep (Jackson, Miss.)
to state titles in football and baseball with 2,762 all-purpose yards and 40 touchdowns on the gridiron. He was also selected in the 31st round of the MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks, but previously announced his intentions to honor his Ole Miss commitment as a two-sport athlete.
of Minnehaha Academy (Minneapolis)
, only a junior, has to be a front-runner to win the award next season after leading the Red Hawks to state titles in football and basketball. He produced 1,578 passing yards and 604 rushing yards with 20 touchdowns in football and averaged 23.3 points, 6.3 assists and 4.7 rebounds per contest on the hardwood.
Ultimately Girard was a step above the rest.
He is the first high school basketball player to average 48 or more points per game in a
season twice, dropping 50 points per game as a junior
and 48.6 per game as a senior.
His senior year was one for the history books. In 30 games, he notched
26 40-point performances, 15 50-point games and a New York Section II
record 69-point outing.
Girard was able to accomplish those numbers on the big stage, finishing with 50 points and hitting the game-tying 3-pointer late in regulation and the game-winning shot as time expired in overtime in the Indians' 75-74 state title victory over Lowville.
Past MaxPreps Male High School Athletes of the Year
2007-08 — Terrelle Pryor, Jeannette (Pa.): Football, basketball
2008-09 — Garrett Gilbert, Lake Travis (Austin, Texas): Football
2009-10 — Dorial Green-Beckham, Hillcrest (Springfield, Mo.): Football, basketball, track and field
2010-11 — Kasen Williams, Skyline (Sammamish, Wash.): Football, basketball, track and field
2011-12 — Anthony Alford, Petal (Miss): Football, baseball
2012-13 — Derrick Henry, Yulee (Fla.): Football
2013-14 — Patrick Mahomes, Whitehouse (Texas): Football, basketball, baseball
2014-15 — Kyler Murray, Allen (Texas): Football, baseball
2015-16 — Lonzo Ball, Chino Hills (Calif.): Basketball
2016-17 — Tim Tawa, West Linn (Ore.): Football, basketball, baseball
2017-18 — Jordyn Adams, Green Hope (Cary, N.C.): Football, baseball