Coach Spotlight: Lamonte Clark

In the heart of the nation's capital lies Ballou Senior High School. The football program has produced such notables as Mike Locksley, head coach of New Mexico, and USA Today's 2006 Defensive High School Player of the Year, Marvin Austin, with North Carolina. The next big deal from the D.C. inner-city high school could be defensive tackle Lamonte Clark.

"Lamonte started out for us in the tight end/defensive end role," said Ballou head football coach Moses Ware. "Over the years he's been here, he's kind of grown out of the position and moved into more of a nose guard on our defensive line. He's also played some right tackle."

Clark was named All-League (DC1AA) and was honorable mention All-DC Metro following his junior campaign.

"He's a good interior player," Ware said of Clark. "Very physical, good at the point of attack. Everything we do defensively in our 33-stack set is centered around Lamonte. When he gets doubled and sometime triple-teamed then it opens up opportunities for other players."

Clark committed to Kansas State in the latter part of June over offers from Illinois and Mike Locksley's New Mexico.

"Lamonte developed a good relationship with (Kansas State Defensive Coordinator) Chris Cosh who used to be at Maryland," said Ware. "I think it was being comfortable with him and the brand of football they play, which is similar to ours, that led to his commitment."

The Ballou Knights begin spring practice on August 6th. Ware intends to ask more from Clark in his final year at the school to improve on their record of 9-2 from a year ago.

"We're going to look for him to anchor our defense," said Ware. "We need him to control the line, do what he's been doing, but with more consistency. He's been a starter since the 10th grade, but as a senior I'm going to ask him to go over and beyond the call of duty."

Clark, 6-4, 295, went with Clark this summer to a 7-on-7 camp in Virginia where the team finished third. He'll be a force on one side of the ball. His teammate, Jamar Lewter, a North Carolina commitment, should be equally effective on the offensive line for the Knights. The team starts the season August 27th against Roosevelt High School.

"Lamonte's a good kid," said Coach Ware. "He comes from a good family upbringing. His academics have been good. He'll qualify."

Lamonte Clark also participates in track & field in the shot put event.

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