Dorial Green-Beckham, one of only eight underclassmen nationwide to win Gatorade State Football Player of the Year honors last fall, is poised to become yet another Gatorade Player of the Year alumnus atop the national record books.
The Hillcrest (Springfield, Mo.) senior enters this Thursday night's regular-season finale against visiting Republic just 62 yards shy of the national career receiving yards mark of 5,867.
The current record was set by former Shreveport Evangel (Shreveport, La.) standout Abram Booty from 1993-96. Green-Beckham moved into second place in career receiving yards on October 7, when he passed current Cincinnati Bengals wideout A.J. Green.
Should he break the career yards standard this week, Green-Beckham will form a POY bookend of sorts with former Kenton quarterback Ben Mauk, who won the 2002-03 Gatorade Ohio Football Player of the Year Award and finished with 17,364 career passing yards -- No. 1 in high school history.
Interestingly, eight of the top 15 prep passers ever in terms of yardage are Gatorade Player of the Year alumni, including four National POY honorees: Tim Couch (1995-96, Ky.), Brock Berlin (1999-00, La.), Greg Paulus (2004-05, N.Y.) and Garrett Gilbert (2008-09, Texas). The other three? Two-time North Carolina POY Chris Leak (2001-03), Drew Tate (2001-02, Texas) and Kenton (Ohio) senior Maty Mauk, the career record-holder’s younger brother.
Earlier this month, Maty Mauk, who also earned POY honors last year as a junior, broke the national record for career completions (1,103) and touchdown passes (185). With just under 17,000 yards passing, one regular-season game remaining and at least one postseason game on tap, Mauk has a good chance to take over the No. 1 spot from his brother, now Kenton's quarterbacks coach. Kenton is 9-0.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound signal-caller has maintained a 3.57 GPA in the classroom. A devoted member of his church community, he has volunteered locally as a bible camp counselor and as an officer in his school’s peer leadership program.
Meanwhile, Green-Beckham needs 248 yards in his last prep regular-season game to also crack the national Top-10 list for receiving yards in a single season. Current No. 10 is former Alice (Texas) star Chris Brazzell, who piled up 1,931 receiving yards during the 1993 campaign. Hillcrest is 8-1.
Also a basketball standout, Green-Beckham has maintained a B average in the classroom. He has volunteered locally as a youth mentor and elementary school motivational speaker, and as part of multiple community service initiatives in association with his church youth group.
The 6-foot-5, 215-pound junior wide receiver hauled in 78 receptions for a state-record 1,706 yards as well as 15 touchdowns last fall, leading the Hornets (7-5) to the second round of the Class 4 state postseason in 2010. Green-Beckham collected 66 receptions for 1,616 yards and 23 touchdowns as a sophomore. The 2009-10 Gatorade Missouri Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year, he also owns the state career state record for receiving touchdowns.