Honors still pouring in for Rockford football team

By Randy Gregory

When the football season finally concludes for Rockford, after what seems to be an annual march deep into the playoffs, it normally is a slow moving process for the various all conference, all area and all state teams to be announced. This year has been no exception and the Detroit News and Detroit Free Press finally revealed their choices. Not surprisingly, the Rockford defense was the biggest recipient of the recognition for this year’s version of Rockford football.

Leading the way was junior inside linebacker Brent Showers with his selection to the Detroit Free Press Dream Team. The Dream Team is a compilation of the top players in the state regardless of division and, not surprisingly Showers merited that distinction after a stellar season. Showers was also selected to the Division 1 all state first team by the Detroit News.

Senior safety KC Zenner also managed to garner his share of attention despite missing the first two games of the season. Zenner overcame the adversity by being named to the Detroit Free Press Division 1 and 2 all state squad as a first-teamer. He was also an honorable mention selection to the all state team by the Detroit News.

The other half of the Ram’s dynamic junior duo at inside linebacker also made the cut as a first team all state selection by the Detroit Free Press. Randy Garvin improved by leaps and bounds and it didn’t go unnoticed. The return of Garvin and Showers next year has to be a frightening thought to every team on the Ram schedule next year.

And finally, senior offensive guard Justin Hopkins was also an honorable mention selection to the offensive line by the Detroit News.

Team selections were also revealed for honors at the postseason banquet on Wednesday, November 28th. Zenner was voted the team’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) and received a three-year varsity player award. Connor Darby, Kyle Short and Hopkins also received the three-year award.

The three units that comprise a football team also have MVP choices for the Rams. Sam Reinke took the honors for the offensive team, Showers for the defensive team and Hunter Smith for the special teams. The offensive and defensive line MVPs were Hopkins and Jarrett Sobkowiak respectively. Chris DesPres was the recipient of the thankless duty as the practice player MVP. Practice players receive little recognition on game days, but are the heart and soul of the majority of players who comprise a roster that carries as many players as the Rams do.

A couple of other awards don’t carry the MVP in their title, but are also near and dear to the heart of Rams everywhere. Jeff Baldwin received the Rick Armstrong Memorial Award for all of his contributions to the team and Scott Kaule received the “Big Heart Award”.

A hearty congratulations to all of the members of the 2012 team and the honorees as well. It was a year to remember and a portent of more good things to come.

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The Squire has been Rockford’s free weekly newspaper since 1871. Our loyal readership includes over fifteen thousand homes in the Rockford area, including the affluent Lakes area of Lake Bella Vista, Bostwick Lake and Silver Lake; Belmont, Blythefield, as well as Algoma, Courtland, Cannon and Plainfield Townships. The Squire is distributed through the U.S. Post Office every Thursday. We also deliver to in-town businesses and homes with paper carriers and news stands in our grocery stores and over thirty local shops.