Mathis com­mits with West Vir­ginia

Will be­come Moun­taineer af­ter grad­u­a­tion in a move to Mor­gan­town

The Standard Journal - - SPORTS - By Kevin Myrick [email protected]­stan­dard­jour­

In­stead of a long, drawn out se­nior sea­son of ag­o­niz­ing over a ma­jor de­ci­sion, Tony Mathis Jr. de­cided he was go­ing to be proac­tive.

He an­nounced a cou­ple of weeks ago now on Face­book that fol­low­ing grad­u­a­tion, he planned to make a trip some 607 miles as the crow flies to a place called Mor­gan­town to play col­lege ball at a Di­vi­sion I school.

That’s right Cedar­town fans, Mathis is headed to West Vir­ginia Univer­sity where he’ll be a Moun­taineer come the 2019 foot­ball sea­son.

Ma this said fol­low­ing Cedar­town’s first win of the sea­son where he put up three touch­downs and more than 150 yards of rush­ing over Alexan­der that he was ex­cited about his de­ci­sion.

“It means a lot for me,” he said. “When I went up there, I felt good about it. The coaches are all in with me, so I’m all in with them.”

Mathis, a six-foot, 195 pound run­ning ma­chine for the Bull­dogs is con­sid­ered a top run­ning back in the state and joins a grow­ing list of Cedar­town grad­u­ates who will be tak­ing their tal­ents on the grid­iron to big named schools.

He said in his an­nounce­ment on Face­book on Aug. 23 that his ca­reer in Cedar­town has been “an amaz­ing jour­ney” and that he wanted to thank ev­ery sin­gle school that re­cruited him for the op­por­tu­ni­ties they sought to pro­vide.

Mathis also had high praise for coaches who have helped him de­velop along the way, and fam­ily and friends both on and off the field.

“Ev­ery­day my love for this game has (grown),” Mathis said. “All my hard work and ded­i­ca­tion have

paid off in many ways, but this is only the be­gin­ning.”

His com­mit­ment came just in time for him to show off just why he is a big time player ready to ex­cel at the next level on the Di­vi­sion I level.

Though he didn’t rack up the big time points against Rock­mart he wanted in

game 1 of the sea­son, Mathis bounced back in a big way against Alexan­der in the back­field, with ju­nior Kobe Pryor run­ning his way through the de­fense as well.

Mathis gave credit to his of­fen­sive line and team­mates for a pos­i­tive out­ing in pre­vi­ous weeks in an in­ter­view fol­low­ing 11Alive’s cov­er­age as the Game of the Week.

He said ad­di­tion­ally that af­ter Rock­mart’s loss, his work on and off the field

has in­creased and given him mo­ti­va­tion to shine.

“I’ve been putting in a lot of work,” he said. “It’s just now pay­ing off.”

Cedar­town’s head coach added his praise for Mathis’ de­ci­sion.

“Tony Mathis is spe­cial… he’s com­mit­ted to West Vir­ginia and they’ve got them­selves a good one,” Coach Doyle Kel­ley said. “I’m very blessed to be able to call him one of my play­ers.”

/ Kevin Myrick, SJ File

Tony Mathis runs down the sidelines for a score against Alexan­der in Cedar­town’s vic­tory on Aug. 24, and he’ll re­turn to the field this Fri­day.

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