In his 36th year honoring the best high school athletes in the country, Jacksonville Jaguar quarterback Trevor Lawrence Dart took the news by surprise as his family, coaches, and teammates showed up at the school with the trophy.
The award, which not only recognizes outstanding sporting achievements, but also recognizes high academic achievements and exemplary character on and off the field, distinguishes Dartas as the best high school footballer in the country. A national advisory body made up of sports-specific experts and sports darts from more than one million high school soccer players across the country
The competition for the state award was tough. Dart topped the list of state winners in football, who together have an incredible list of accomplishments, including 36 with signed national letters of intent to play football at Division I colleges / universities, 20 first-team selections for all states (including two selections for 2019 due to the coronavirus) pandemic seasonal cancellations) and 13 with a GPA of 4.0 and above.
“I can’t remember a quarterback improving from junior to senior year like Jaxson Dart, who brought his game to an elite level last fall,” said Steven Wiltfong, director of recruiting at 247Sports. “As a four-year starter, he made the game look like everyone else was moving in slow motion as he completed nearly 6,000 yards of attack and 79 touchdowns, 67 of which came through the air. He is accurate at all levels of the field and a heavily armed passer with a high soccer IQ. He added a running element to his game last season and collapsed the teams when he pulled the ball down as well. I think Dart is a national championship-caliber quarterback at the next level and I’m excited to see what he does at USC. “
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound senior quarterback went for 4,691 yards and 67 touchdowns last season, leading the Chargers to a 14-0 record and the class 6A state championship. Dart completed 240 of 345 passes and threw only four interceptions while also racing at 1,195 yards and 12 TDs on 128 carries. As MaxPreps national player of the year, he was also voted Mr. Football by the Deseret News. Dart was ranked the nation’s No. 19 recruit in the Class of 2021 by ESPN.
Dart has helped elderly members of his community by volunteering for a local grocery bank and clothing donation campaign.
Dart received a GPA of 3.98 in the classroom. He signed a National Letter of Intent to play football at the University of Southern California on a scholarship this fall.
“We keep seeing Gatorade National Players of the Year doing great things like playing on professional teams, winning national championships, and becoming coaches and role models for future generations of athletes,” said Gatorade Senior Vice President and General Manager Brett O ‘ Brien. “Jaxson Dart joins a list of formidable student-athletes who have won the prestigious award and we are confident they are heading for a life of similar success.”
Each year, a selection committee evaluates the nation’s best talent in the District of Columbia and all 50 states and selects national winners in 12 different sports: soccer, girls’ volleyball, boys and girls cross country skiing, boys and girls basketball, baseball, softball, boys and girls soccer and athletics for boys and girls.
Gatorade’s goal is to recognize, support, and keep athletes in play based on the lifelong skills that sport provides on and off the field. Since the program was launched in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award winners have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also become pillars in their communities by becoming coaches, business owners, and educators. Past winners include a number of outstanding athletes such as Peyton Manning, Abby Wambach, Jayson Tatum, Derek Jeter, Elena Delle Donne and many other sports icons.