Patton Hoping To Hear From Tressel

Poland, Ohio, junior athlete Darius Patton has established himself as one of the top athletes in the 2011 Ohio class. Patton, who transferred from Pittsburgh Penn Hills prior to the start of the 2009 season, helped lead Poland to an exciting second round playoff win over Akron Hoban 10-7 last Friday night. Bill Greene was on hand and filed this report.

Poland advanced to the third round of the Ohio high school playoffs with an exciting 10-7 win over Akron Hoban. Poland was led by junior star athlete Darius Patton, who caught seven passes for 122 yards in the win.

"It feels great to win this game because we are really coming together as a team," Patton said of the win. His catch set up the game-winning field goal in the final minute. He then secured the victory by intercepting a pass on the last play of the game.

"Our coaches did a great job putting us in a position to win," Patton stressed. "We did what we had to do late in the game to get the win, and I'm very proud of our team for pulling that win out. We came together as a team and won the game as a team."

Patton's performance was nothing short of fantastic, on both sides of the football, but he preferred to talk of his team's upcoming game with Youngstown Cardinal Mooney.

"I think I played alright, but there's no time to worry about that right now," he said. "We are going to need to start getting ready right now for Cardinal Mooney. I try to do my best every week to help my team win because that's what my coaches and teammates expect from me."

Patton, 5-9 and 165 pounds, was timed at a 4.55 40-yard dash last summer. That speed and athleticism will make him a target of college recruiters over the next year.

"I want to play football in college some day, but it's way too early for me to be worrying about that," he admitted. "I've had a couple teams show some interest in me, but I'd rather not get into that right now. I think recruiting stuff should be handled in the off-season, not now after a big victory."

This exciting youngster is the son of former Youngstown State star Shawn Patton, who played for the Penguins under then-head coach Jim Tressel, a fact not lost on the younger Patton.

"I don't really want to list the schools I'm interested in right now," he said. "Maybe once our season is over I will start to look at that stuff. I see myself as a slot receiver in college, maybe in Ohio. You never know what might happen. My dad played for (current Ohio State head coach) Jim Tressel at Youngstown State, and I'm hoping Coach Tressel knows about me. I'm hoping to hear from him. We just have to see how things go with Ohio State, and the other schools, but right now I need to get myself ready to go for next week."

Patton and his Poland teammates face a tough test this Friday night in Youngstown Cardinal Mooney. Regardless of how the game turns out there is no doubt Darius Patton will be one of the top prospects in the 2011 Ohio class.

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