Monday, May 4, 2009

Jensen's peronifies the best of Manatee County's prep atheletes.

I had a chance to speak with Austin Jensen on Monday during Manatee's spring football practice. Set to enter his junior season at Florida Atlantic, Jensen returned to his old stomping grounds to sneak a peak at the Hurricanes, who are two practices into the spring football season.
Jensen, who is wearing a cast after injuring his wrist during FAU's spring game, was always one of my favorite prep athletes, and not just because he was a dynamo between the hashmarks. He's a good a kid who is evolving into a good person, and our chat today only reaffirmed that fact.
Jensen would love to play his way into the NFL. And who wouldn't? But first, he wants to get his education, which is his top priority.
A kid putting education in front of athletics? It was nice to hear. And in my dealings with Jensen, he always came across as very sincere. He wouldn't say if it he didn't mean it.
Jensen is a good ambassador for Manatee County sports, and he's far from the only one. I have had the pleasure of talking to many great kids in my three-plus years covering high school sports down here, whether they were football players, sprinters or softball players.
They are enough to make a cynical guy like me feel a tad optimistic about the future. Hopefully, the up-and-comers follow their lead.

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