William Griffin thought he would already have a win and about 200 yards rushing by the time this weekend rolled around.
Instead, the Patterson (La.) star running back is just getting his season started after Hurricane Katrina indirectly wiped out his team's season opener with Airlines.
"They told us at first they were moving the game from Friday to Saturday, but then Saturday came and they didn't turn up," Griffin said of Airlines. "It turns out they had no way to get here because they had taken all of their school buses to New Orleans to help them evacuate people from the SuperDome to take them to Houston, too."
Against that backdrop, it was hard to think about football anyway according to Griffin (5-11, 197, 4.5), who is being recruited by the University of Arkansas and many other schools and had 1,600 yards rushing and 22 touchdowns last season.
While Patterson was affected only by high winds, Griffin did have some friends who were hit hard by the hurricane's wrath.
"It's just amazing what happened and it's a tragedy," Griffin said. "My heart goes out to all those that lost their homes and many who had family who either passed or were just devastated in another way."
Patterson was out of school during the entire last week with the Lumberjacks' football team practicing on Tuesday through Friday.
"It's been kind of strange after going to school to be out a whole week and then only to be going up there to practice," Griffin said. "I think we were ready to play, but I certainly understand why we didn't."
Griffin has a batch of scholarship offers from schools such as Auburn, Florida, Georgia, UCLA,Tulane and LSU among others, but wants one from Arkansas.
He fell in love with the Razorbacks while in Fayetteville this summer for a football camp.
"They have told me they are going to come down and watch me play and will offer me then if they like what they see," Griffin said. "If I do get that offer, it is most likely where I am going to go. I just really love the place, the coaching staff and the facilities."
He's fairly pumped about the commitment to Arkansas from Springdale quarterback Mitch Mustain, the number one signal caller in the country according to Scout.com.
"I think they have a lot of great young players already and having him and hopefully myself being there, too, will just make for a very bright future for Arkansas," Griffin said. "He's big-time. I saw him up there at the (Arkansas) camp and could tell that."
Patterson, just one of the four 3A District 7 teams unable to play, will open its season this Friday at Morgan City.
Griffin's goal at the start of the season was to play in the state playoffs at the SuperDome, a site that certainly won't be holding any football games anytime soon.
"I got to go there and play my freshman year and played and really had looked forward to leading my team back there this year," Griffin said. "I don't know where the games will be played now, but that's still my goal."
Griffin certainly wants to do his share to get them there.
"If it was up to me I would get between 30 and 40 carries a game and I think I could handle that," Griffin said. "I want to put these team on my shoulders and carry it."
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