LCA student-athelete named Gatorade Kentucky Football Player of the Year

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ/Press Release) – In its 37th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Xavier Brown of Lexington Christian Academy is the 2021-22 Gatorade Kentucky Football Player of the Year.

Brown is the first Gatorade Kentucky Football Player of the Year to be chosen from Lexington Christian Academy.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Brown as Kentucky’s best high school football player.

Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Football Player of the Year award to be announced in December, Brown joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners, including Emmitt Smith (1986-87, Escambia High School, Fla.), Matthew Stafford (2005-06, Highland Park High School, Texas) and Christian McCaffrey (2012-13 & 2013-14, Valor Christian High School, Colo.).

The 5-foot-10, 185-pound senior running back had led the Eagles to a 13-0 record and a berth in the Class 2A state championship game at the time of his selection.

At the end of the season, Brown had rushed 117 times for 1,511 yards and added another 17 receptions for 398 yards while scoring 28 total touchdowns. The District Player of the Year, he is an All State and three-time All-City selection.

A standout on the track oval, Brown has volunteered locally on behalf of his school’s Beta Club and Diversity Council.

“Xavier Brown is as explosive a football player as our state has to offer,” said Jason Morris, head coach at Owensboro Catholic High School. “He can hurt you in every aspect of the game. He’s a great returner on special teams, a terrific athlete on offense—catching and running the ball—and he can cover any receiver on defense.”

Brown has maintained a 3.63 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to play football on scholarship at the University of Virginia next fall.

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ cross country, boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ and girls’ soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.

The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media, and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport.

Brown joins recent Gatorade Kentucky Football Players of the Year Jager Burton (2020-21, Frederick Douglass High School), Michael Mayer (2019-20, Covington Catholic High School), Wandale Robinson (2018-19, Western Hills High School), and Rondale Moore (2017-18, Trinity High School), among the state’s list of former award winners.

Gatorade has a long-standing history of serving athlete communities and understands how sports instill valuable lifelong skills on and off the field. Through Gatorade’s “Play it Forward” platform, Brown has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national organization of their choosing that helps young athletes realize the benefits of playing sports.

Brown is also eligible to submit a short video explaining why the organization they chose is deserving of one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants, which will be announced throughout the year. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $3.5 million across more than 1,300 organizations.

Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators.

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