A big football weekend in the life of Dustin Binkley got off to a great start Friday
The Maplewood High School lineman won the 68th annual William Hume Award in a Kiwanis Club presentation in the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel.
Binkley is an offensive guard/defensive tackle for Maplewood (11-3), which will play Greeneville for the 4A state championship Saturday at Tennessee Tech.
“I was very surprised to win the award and very honored,” Binkley said just after he received the huge Hume trophy. “I’m so appreciative of the good coaching I’ve received and I thank the Kiwanis Club. I felt like the McGavock player [Caleb Azubike] would win it.
“It’s a very exciting time for me and our team, getting ready to play the state championship game.”
The award is presented annually to a Nashville Metro public schools player for athletic and academic excellence and community service.
Binkley is one of Maplewood’s team captains, has a 3.7 GPA and is involved in several school projects. He has been accepted to Austin Peay and UT-Chattanooga but has no plans to play football in college. He also plays five positions for the Maplewood baseball and participates in track and field.
Binkley is the fifth Maplewood player to win the award. The last to do so before him was lineman James Stone in 2009.
“It blew me away when [Metro AD Roosevelt Sanders] announced Dustin as the winner,’’ Coach Arcentae Broome said. “I wasn’t expecting it. Dustin is someone so deserving and he typifies what the award represents. You don’t have to tell him something twice, because he grasps it. He helps corral some of the other guys who are being squirly. He really makes it easy on a coach.
“Something like this changes the brand on our school, it gives us more positive notice. Dustin’s making a huge difference.”
“This is the most prestigious award a Nashville high school football player can receive,” Sanders said, before making the presentation.
Other finalists included:
• Demarco Moore, Antioch: President of the senior class, also runs on the track team and has a 3.5 GPA. “As a senior and the quarterback, he was the leader of a young team and helped us win the outright district championship for the first time in 12 years,” coach Mike Woodward said.
• William Cooper, Hillsboro: Team captain of the Burros and as middle linebacker was the leader of the defense with 127 tackles. Also compiled a 3.1 GPA taking honors courses. “He handled all our defensive calls. Once when he came to the sidelines, he said, ‘You’re going to miss me next year, coach,’ and he’s right,’’ said coach Dennis Moreno said.
• Caleb Azubike, McGavock: All-Metro player and Vanderbilt commitment was ranked the No. 1 defensive end in the state and No. 18 nationally by rivals.com. Compiled a 3.0 GPA, with 13 of his 29 classes as honors courses. He led McGavock with117 tackles, 30 for losses, 14 sacks and was selected to play in the Tennessee East-West all-star game. “It’s just his third year to play organized football, and he’s improved greatly each year,” said Raiders coach Jay Gore.
• Ike Amadi, Overton: Standout linebacker and defensive captain was one of the Bobcats leaders at linebacker as well as a blocking tight end and compiled a 3.0 GPA. “He always lined up correctly and got his teammates lined correctly when they needed to be,” assistant Jim Fuller, subbing for Terry Anderson, who had a school commitment, said. “He would knock down opponents, help them back up, and knock them down again. After we lost in the [6A] playoffs, he was the one who got up and addressed our team.”