WSU prospect Stewart named All-American

LACEY, Washington - As a result of being one of the top high school football players in the nation, <b>Jonathan Stewart</b> of Lacey, Washington has been named a 2005 U.S. Army All-American. Stewart, who has been offered a scholarship by Washington State, will join a stand-out list of athletes playing in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday, January 15, 2005 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. He has taken an unofficial visit to Wazzu and will trip there officially on October 30.

This classic east vs. west match-up will be televised live on NBC at 12:00 p.m. (CST) and will feature the best 78 high school football student-athletes in the country.

"It's the highest honor for me right now, God blessed me today," Stewart said Friday after a packed assembly cheered Jonathan on during the presentation. "It was an awesome experience. The school was all pumped up for me, my mom (Lora Faison) was there, everybody was there for me. It's a national thing. All I can do is thank God for it all."

"It is a great pleasure to have this fine young man selected to represent his school and community as a U.S. Army All-American," said Colonel Thomas Nickerson, Director of Strategic Outreach for the U.S. Army Accessions Command. "He has proven himself to be a superior athlete and I know he will add an exciting dimension to January's game.

Our slogan, ‘An Army of One,' recognizes the value of individual talents toward achieving team goals, and his talents make him a strong addition to this All-American team, Nickerson added. This game will highlight his skills for a national audience, and the Army is pleased to provide this opportunity to him and all the U.S. Army All-Americans."

Stewart is a standout running back at Timberline High School and was one of 400 players nominated nationally and one of 78 selected to participate by the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Selection Team made up of representatives of, the web's largest independent sports network, and Tom Lemming of ESPN Sports and USA Today.

"The first thing that jumps out at you with Stewart is his size. Stewart shouldn't be described as a blazer but he has good speed and quickness for his size. The second impressive attribute with regards to Stewart, and perhaps his best attribute, is his balance. For a 218-pounder he has amazing balance, footwork and agility. He finds a way to stay on his feet after the initial contact by the defense. Balance is an important attribute when evaluating running backs. Stewart runs with exceptional power and can be a very punishing runner at times. Combine these attributes and you get this year's top-rated running back," said Jamie Newberg, National Analyst for

Speaking of speed and quickness, Stewart is also a finalist for the Myoplex Speed and Strength Athlete of the Year Award. This award will go to the nation's fastest, strongest and most dedicated high school football player at the 2005 U.S. Army All-American Awards Dinner on January 14, 2005 in San Antonio. The Trophy is in the likeness of Walter Payton. The other finalists for this award are Dan Doering, Derrick Williams, Michael Ray Garvin and Ryan Reynolds.

"Speed and strength are the keys to success on the field," said Heather Fitzgerald, marketing director for Myoplex. "And the keys to developing speed and strength are hard work in the gym and proper nutrition. We've helped elite NFL players improve their nutrition for more than a decade. With this award, we hope to show the nation's top high school football players the role proper nutrition plays in reaching their goals."

Stewart tested out Friday in four different athletic disciplines. He measured in at 5-foot-10 and 224 pounds and bench-pressed 185 pounds 25 times, jumped 40.5 inches in the vertical jump, ran the 20-yard pro agility shuttle in 4.49 (on soft, slippery grass conditions), and finally ran the 150-yard shuttle in 23.39 wearing a ten-pound vest.

Ken Croner, on hand to verify the times and measurements for Tempe, Arizona-based Athletes Performance, said that Stewart's workout was exceptional. "He did extremely well - by any standard," said Croner.

Also given out at the U.S. Army All-American Awards Dinner will be the Ball Park National High School Player of the Year Award honoring the nation's best prep football player. The winner of the award will receive the Ken "The Sugarland Express" Hall Trophy which is the equivalent of the high school Heisman Trophy and is named after record setting running back Ken Hall of Sugarland, Texas.

"We're excited about our sponsorship of such an award," said Deborah Sabo, director of marketing for Ball Park. "This honor rewards the core principles within high school football that we have here at Ball Park – excellence and quality."

The winning team of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl will receive the Herman Boone Trophy named after the legendary Virginia high school football coach who was immortalized in the Disney feature film, Remember the Titans. Also, the game MVP will receive the Pete Dawkins MVP Trophy named after the 1958 Heisman Trophy winner.

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