Being one of the most sought-after players in the country is something that junior defensive end Micah Parsons has had to get used to on several levels. From an individual standpoint, Parsons feels very blessed for all of the offers that he has received. The five-star defensive end verbally committed to Penn State earlier this year, but that hasn’t stopped other top programs from offering him a scholarship. Even though his recruitment has picked up several notches, the main goal for him is to be the best teammate he can be for his Central Dauphin High School football team.
“I want to do anything to help my team and play anywhere I’m needed,” said Parsons. “It’s all about helping your team and building with your team. We lost a lot of key players from last year’s team so we’re trying to come together as one.”
During the off-season, Parsons made it a point to get better and test himself against top players across the nation. According to Parsons, he worked on his speed, transition and hand placement among other things during the off-season. Parsons also attended several invite-only camps where he tested himself against other players considered to be amongst the best in the nation. Parsons even participated in the nationally recognized PA Swag 7v7 tournament to show that he’s not only a good defensive end, but he’s also a good all-around football player.
“It (competing against other top player) definitely made me step my game up more,” Parsons said. “I finally realized that there are a lot of players just as good as me. I was satisfied where I was at as a player, but then I learned that I needed to get better. It’s made me work harder. My coaches and teammates have pushed me harder and have made sure that I go all out with my workouts. I have to thank my coaches and teammates for trying to push me. I want to be able take on any thing that comes my way once I get to the next level.”
Parsons will get a chance to contribute on the offensive side of the ball for the Ram this season, but he knows that his team needs him mostly for defense. “Coach Mac (Central Dauphin head coach Glen McNamara) is going to try to get me involved a little bit in the offense, but my main focus is defense because that’s where the team needs me the most.”
Parsons has worked on becoming a better player and teammate during the off-season. “A lot of the younger guys look up to me,” said Parsons. “They see me hitting hard and going one-hundred percent in everything I do and it motivates them. I definitely try to be there for the team as much as possible. I’ve definitely matured a lot since my freshman year because I realized that we can accomplish more together as a team. I definitely settled down on the way I act and I’m ready to move forward and do great things this year. Most of us played together on the freshman football team where we went undefeated. We’re definitely close.”
You can expect to see Parson’s at multiple positions in Central Dauphin’s defense this year. “I’ll be playing linebacker, defensive tackle and defensive end,” Parsons added.
Coming off a year where Central Dauphin lost the District 3 Class-AAAA Championship Game to Cumberland Valley after several overtimes, Parsons and his teammates have extra motivation going into the 2016 season.
“It’s (the loss to Cumberland Valley) given us a lot of motivation because we have had great seasons, but we haven’t finished them with a championship. I feel that this team can win the District 3 Championship this year,” said Parsons.
Despite the additional offers he’s currently receiving and will continue to receive, Parsons remains committed to Penn State for now. When the time comes, Parsons says he still plans to take all five of his official visits.
“I’m in constant contact with the Penn State coaching staff,” assured Parsons. “I’ll be at Penn State this weekend for their game against Kent State.”