Full disclosure, this has been the toughest year making a decision on PrepColorado Player of the Year. The current classes, 2016 and 2017, are two of the most talented in recent Colorado football history, creating numerous worthy candidates.
The finalist mark many of the state’s most complete and talented football competitors. More than any other time, three underclassmen warranted serious attention as Valor’s Dylan McCaffrey, Grandview’s Hayden Blubaugh and Pomona’s Jake Moretti not only played great individual football but also paced their teams to strong seasons.
McCaffrey, the nationally recruited junior quarterback, guided Valor Christian to a state title, playing at such a consistently high level it was often taken for granted. Blubaugh, Grandview’s junior running back, rushed for over 2,300 yards playing against many of the state’s top teams. Blubaugh had five games over 200 yards including two games over 300 yards. Moretti, an early Ohio State commit at offensive tackle, is Colorado’s top football player and the physical presence behind Pomona’s run to the state title game.
For the seniors, Holy Family quarterback Chris Helbig was in the midst of rewriting the record book prior to an injury. In nine games, Helbig threw for over 3,500 yards, including a 607 yard six touchdown game against Mountain View.
In leading Pueblo East to a state title, senior quarterback Danny Martin did it all for his squad, throwing for over 1,600 yards, rushing for nearly 1,500 yards and scoring a combined 41 scores on offense. Further, Martin was one of Colorado’s best defensive backs and also worked at East’s punter and punt returner.
As deserving as all the candidates are, senior Jo Jo Domann of Pine Creek is the 2015 PrepColorado Player of the Year. The Nebraska bound senior is the epitome of the complete football player excelling in every aspect of football. Further, Domann is the ultimate big play performer. As a runner this season Domann averaged nearly 11 yards a carry while scoring 11 times. As a receiver Domann averaged over 20 yards a reception while scoring nine times. As great as Domann is on offense, remember he is headed to Nebraska to play defense and this year, as throughout his career, Domann was dominant making big plays in every aspect of the defensive game playing against the run, the pass and working as a pass rusher. Due to his great play on offense and defense people forget that Domann is one of the best special team’s player in Colorado, averaging nearly 43 yards as a punter and serving as a very good kicker hitting on 34 of 37 PATs. Beyond the stats and talent, most importantly Domann is a winner. During his career his Eagles have gone 38-3, winning two state titles.