All-State teams for the 2022 season will be dropping next week on FloridaHSFootball.com and in the led up to that, we have narrowed down the list of the five candidates that are in consideration for our Offensive Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, and Coach of the Year in each of the nine classifications as well as in the Sunshine State Athletic Conference. Also, one of the players between the Offensive Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year candidates will be named Overall Player of the Year for their classification.
And for the second year in a row, we are giving fans a vote to decide on who will win the fan vote for each of our three categories for Offensive Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, and Coach of the Year in every classification.
Voting will run through 9 PM EST / 8 PM CST on Thursday, February 16, 2023. You may vote unlimited times during the poll and the poll does have trackers to prevent bot voting.
Here are the candidates for the Class 3M Offensive Player of the Year, Class 3M Defensive Player of the Year, and Class 3M Coach of the Year along with polls for each section!
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
RB Cedric “C.J.” Baxter, Edgewater (Orlando) – Baxter who has been the start of the Eagles’ offense the last several years rushed for 1,375 yards and 13 touchdowns on 174 carries in 2022.
ATH Jamari Hayes, Plantation – A do-everything athlete for the Colonels, Hayes had 1,038 yards receiving on 46 catches along with 10 touchdowns, plus had 538 return yards with two punt return touchdowns and one kickoff return touchdown, guiding the Colonels to the playoffs.
RB Jordan Lyle, St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale) – A key star of the offense for the Raiders, the junior running back, rushed for 1,102 yards on 105 carries and 13 touchdowns guiding St. Thomas Aquinas to the Class 3M state title.
QB Joshua Townsend, Homestead – A shining star of the Broncos offense once again, Townsend, threw for 2,038 yards on 106 passing completions of 183 made throwing for 23 touchdowns in the process. Townsend also added 435 yards rushing and six more touchdowns to his total in 2022 as a junior, guiding Homestead to the Class 3M title game.
WR Kamare Williams, Atlantic (Delray Beach) – Only a sophomore, Williams has already made an impact for Atlantic racking up 916 yards of receiving and 11 touchdowns on 35 receptions which makes him a spotlight star to watch over the next two seasons.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
DL Armondo Blount, Dillard (Fort Lauderdale) – The sophomore arguably had the most significant impact on the Panthers’ defense, racking up 17 sacks and 32 tackles for loss to go along with 63 tackles on the season.
LB Malik Bryant, Jones (Orlando) – A leader of the Tigers’ defense in guiding them to their second straight semifinal appearance in as many seasons, Bryant, had 73 tackles along with 10 tackles for loss, six sacks, forcing two fumbles and recovering a fumble.
DB David Jester, Homestead – Jester arguably had a ton of impact on defense for the Broncos with 52 tackles, recovering five fumbles, deflecting eight passes, collecting six interceptions, and having a touchdown on a kickoff return that guided the Broncos to the first-ever state title appearance.
DL Keyshawn Johnson, St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale) – A major cog of the Raiders’ defensive line, Johnson was a force to be reckoned with during the season with 39 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 17 sacks, and forcing a fumble on the way to help St. Thomas Aquinas win the state title.
DB King Mack, St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale) – Another force of the St. Thomas Aquinas defense, Mack made life miserable for anyone trying to go against the secondary and did that with 50 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, breaking up nine passes and collecting one interception. Mack also was effective in the special team’s effort with two kickoff return touchdowns, and 2 punt return touchdowns. He also had one rushing touchdown on offense. That effort helped the Raiders to the Class 3M title.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Mike Bailey, Blanche Ely (Pompano Beach) – Guided one of the biggest turnarounds in just one season where the Tigers finished 1-9 in 2021 and took them to the regional finals in 2022 before falling to St. Thomas Aquinas. Ely’s record for the season was 10-1.
Roger Harriott, St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale) – Another year, another state title – and making it four straight state titles for the Raiders – who finished the 2022 season with a 14-0 overall record.
Philip Simpson, Homestead – In his final year before taking a college coaching position at Nebraska, Simpson guided the Broncos to their first-ever state championship appearance in program history finishing with a 12-3 overall record.
Matt Thompson, Jesuit (Tampa) – After winning the Class 6A state championship in 2021, the Tigers despite struggling at times during the season, reached the state semifinals once again finishing the year 9-5 overall.
Elijah Williams, Jones (Orlando) – Guided the Tigers to a second straight final-four appearance with an 11-3 overall record.