Leader on and off the field

If you're looking for a prospect with exceptional leadership qualities, then consider Spencer Stanley of Fort Worth Trinity Valley. In addition to helping his squad to an SPC championship as a sophomore, Stanley takes to the local streets and ministers to young children in the community.

Football is important to Spencer Stanley. However, in addition to crushing quarterbacks, the Class of 2012 defensive end attends to other important tasks, such as ministering to youth in the Dallas community.

"We had planned to go on a mission to Haiti," said Stanley, who played a big role in Trinity Valley's 2009 SPC Division II title run, "but things didn't work out with that. We took that as God revealing that we weren't supposed to go to Haiti.

"Instead, we put on a Vacation Bible School at a local church in South Oak Cliff, where I mentored the younger students. One thing I go by in life - if I take care of my priorities, then God will reward me down the line."

At 6-foot-4, 235 pounds, Stanley is blessed with natural football talent. Last year, he helped the Fort Worth-based Trojans to a 10-1 mark, including two wins over Arlington Oakridge, a team that featured three BYU signees. Despite being only a sophomore, Stanley gave three-star Oakridge OL/DL Tayo Fabuluje fits on both sides of the ball in each game.

"I'm trying to get stronger and faster," said Stanley. "I ran a 5.0 laser timed and a 4.9 with our coaches timing it - and they're pretty darn accurate.

The Trojans are expected to win the conference again, but Fort Worth All Saints - which handed Trinity Valley its only 2009 defeat - and Irving Cistercian Prep are poised to challenge for the top spot. In addition, Oakridge may reload in lieu of rebuilding.

"All Saints is a just good overall team," Stanley said. "Their best offensive tackle signed with Mary Hardin-Baylor. Cistercian has a 6-foot-4, 305-pound defensive tackle/offensive lineman, Ikenna Nwafor, who should be a challenge. We also face Midland Christian, which has a 6-foot-7, 285-pound TCU commit (Bobby Thompson) at left tackle. That should be a good head-to-head battle."

Stanley burst onto the SMU radar after a great performance at camp this summer and he already has a friend on the Mustangs' roster.

"I've talked to Blake McJunkin, who is a center at SMU," he said. "He was a counselor at a Christian summer camp that I attended and it's great seeing how SMU has been doing. Hopefully, they'll make it to another bowl game this year."

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