A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2012 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For his 50 fellow Gatorade State Boys Track & Field Athletes of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Carl Heinz
School: Oak Park-River Forest (Oak Park, Ill.)
Athletic achievement: Heinz captured the Class 3A state championship in the high jump this spring with a clearance of 7 feet, one inch, which ranked as the nation’s No. 1 performance among prep competitors in 2012 at the time of his selection. It was the second straight state title for Heinz, who also finished fifth in the triple jump and led the Huskies to a third-place finish as a team.
Academic excellence: Heinz has maintained a 4.34 GPA in the classroom.
Exemplary character: He has volunteered locally on behalf of food and clothing drives, Ronald McDonald House Charities and a middle school drug awareness program.
“Carl epitomizes the role of competitor,” said Oak Park-River Forest high jump coach Danielle Dobias. “He has consistently achieved athletic excellence. It’s hard to imagine how high and far he will go.”
THE FUTURE: Heinz has signed a National Letter of Intent to compete in track and field on scholarship at Duke University this fall.