Monday, 09 April 2012 01:32


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QB/RB/WR/KR/LB  Dalontae Jennings
Baltimore Metro
One of the most difficult and challenging decisions that the GYFL "Powers That Be" had to make was the selection of the Most Valuable Player for the Inaugural 2010 Season.  This decision will be greatly debated for years and will come as a shocker to many who expected one of the prolific and electrifying players on the offensive side of the ball like Ish Seisay, who was the Offensive POY, or Deandre Parker, who was the first team Quarterback, to get the nod.  Certainly Tahir Tyler put in a case for MVP with his spectacular running.  Will Hollister was very impressive as a pocket passer and Khari Williams star shone brightly as a return specialist.  Tony Hansford showed us athleticism on the football field not often seen at the youth level.  On the defensive side of the ball, both Jake Pinkston and Raymond Jackson had MVP type years and made their case for the coveted award.  Most of the above players were 1st Team All GYFL performers, so how on earth could Dalontae "Di Di" Jennings be the MVP when he didn't even make first team anything?
Statistically, he was not the best an any position.  He was not the best QB, although he played it admirably in the Championship game when he had to fill in for an injured Quante Cornish and led the Baltimore All Stars to the title.  He was not the best RB in the league, although he averaged 6.3 yards per carry every time he touched the ball, eclipsing the 5.8 yards per carry average of Tyler.  He also had 3 rushing touchdowns on the year on only 26 carries.  He was not the best WR in the league, although he averaged 18.3 yards per reception, which ranked him 2nd in the league behind Hansford.  He was not the best KR in the league although he averaged 27.5 yards per return.  He wasn't the best LB in the league although he ranked 4th with 20 tackles and 1 interception.
Simply put, although "Di Di" did not lead in any statistical category, he filled up the stat sheet in EVERY statistical category.  Flat out, "Di Di" was the best FOOTBALL PLAYER in the league.  Those that truly understand the game know that you must look at more than stats to truly evaluate a player.  Jennings just jumped out at us on film.  As a LB, he was vicious.  It wasn't just the number of tackles he made, it was the violence and precision with which he delivered his blows.  It was the timing of the big stops just when the Baltimore defense needed one. 
Jennings winning this award will hopefully get other young football players to understand what it means to be a team player and to sacrifice themselves for the good of the team.  Dalontae could have led the league in rushing if he would have been handed the ball 20 times per game, but he never complained becasue he knew that Baltimore had great running backs.  He sacrificed his own glory for the good of the team.  He stepped in and filled whatever role coach Ty Johnson and the Baltimore staff needed him to fill.  When they needed a big catch, they split him out wide or ran him accross the middle and he made the catch, broke a tackle, then got up field for big yardage.  When a punt return was needed to turn the momentum around, it was "Di Di" who dropped back to receive it and he always came through.
When a big stop was needed, "Di Di" plugged the whole and got it done.  When it was time to put the team on his back and go win that Championship, coach Ty put the ball in "Di Di's" hands and he delivered.  Jennings is the embodiment of the term "football player."  The most valuable player award is not just for offense.  It is not just for defense.  It is for the complete football player and after pouring over hours and hours of film, it was clear to us that Dalontae deserved this award.  Congratulations "Di Di"!  Let this be a lesson to all young football players out there that crave the spotlight and don't put the team first.  The cream rises to the top just like Dalontae has.  Put the team first and all of your individual goals will take care of themselves.  It is important for the credibilty of the GYFL that our very first MVP be a success story.  We are extremely confident that in years to come, Jennings will make us look like gurus.  We think he is that special.
Special thanks goes out the Mightly Liberty Lions for allowing the GYFL to showcase one of your prized products.  You groomed him well.  Also, congratulations to "Di Di's" father Lance Jennings, who coaches at Liberty and who has done a fantastic job developing his son on and off the field.  Dalontae attends Mervo Tech and we expect nothing but the best for his future.  I am sure that college coaches will be lining up to sign this kid in a few years and will follow him closely and promote him every chance that we get.  If he continues to work hard on and off the field, stays on the right path and focuses on his academics, the sky is the limit for this young man! We tip our hats.


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