Blogs / Features
Don KetchumStaff Writer, AIA365.com firstname.lastname@example.org
NW Christian's Osborne: You know him, but try to stop himNov 13, 2012
By Don Ketchum
Trevor Osborne was standing on the edge of the football field at Phoenix Northwest Christian on Tuesday (Nov. 13), talking with a visitor and waiting for practice to start.
Members of the school’s junior-high cross-country team, would jog past and greet him.
“Hey, Trevor,’’ said one runner.
“Trevor,’’ said another male runner.
“Girl-friends,’’ said one female runner.
OK, smart aleck.
The point is, Northwest Christian coach David Inness says, “Everybody knows “T.’ ’’
Inness predicted this kind of thing would happen, as early as a year ago. Osborne was sort of in the shadow of his friend, Casey Jahn, who became the state’s career rushing leader and went on to play at Northern Arizona University.
Inness knew that Osborne would emerge as a force on the field and grab his share of the limelight, and boy, has he ever.
He is one of the reasons why Northwest Christian has reached Saturday’s Division V semifinal game opposite rival Yuma Catholic, a 7 p.m. kickoff at Phoenix Arcadia High. The teams met for the state title last year, with Yuma Catholic prevailing.
The 6-foot-3, 198-pound senior has put up an array of numbers.
*He has rushed for 389 yards and six touchdowns, sometimes on end arounds from his wide receiver spot, sometimes as a running back and even sometimes taking a direct snap out of the Wildcat formation.
*He has caught 38 passes for 728 yards and 12 TDs.
*From his safety spot, he is averaging 8.1 tackles per game (97 total) with four interceptions.
*And when the team’s punt returner was sidelined by an injury, Osborne took over. He has averaged 21.11 yards on nine returns.
Is there anything else? Not yet, but there’s still time.
The versatility has come easily compared to the “celebrity’’ status that goes with it.
“I have people who I see in the hallway and want to high-five me. Some of them, the younger kids, I don’t even know their names,’’ he said. “It’s kind of cool, but it also feels weird. I guess when you’re at a smaller school, it happens, you become sort of a role model for younger kids. I want them to see what’s important, to be good in school, strive for excellence in everything you do, including your faith.’’
Osborne also excels in the classroom, with a 4.3 grade-point average. He is a member of the National Honor Society, and he is getting looks from many Ivy League schools that want him to study and play football for them.
He also has been contacted by some of the service academies, and major colleges such as Northwestern and Stanford. He hopes to make a decision sometime in January, and said he is leaning toward an Ivy League school.
“To be able to study and play football at a school like that would be great,’’ said Osborne, who also plays basketball for Northwest.
“You have to have a good balance.’’
He also has participated in public-service projects such as a goodwill mission trip to Mexico, where his group helped build a home for a family.
“They were so happy and grateful that we could help them. It was a cool experience,’’ he said.
Football remains his driving force. He and the Crusaders – who are far from being a one-man team – are focused on Yuma Catholic. Northwest (11-1) is the No. 1 seed, Yuma Catholic (11-1) No. 5. The teams also met in the season opener way back in August, with Northwest winning 16-14.
“Even though our schools are far apart, we see this kind of becoming a rivalry like they have up in the White Mountains, like Blue Ridge-Show Low,’’ Inness said.
“This game is almost as important as a state championship game,’’ Osborne said. “We still have a bad taste in our mouths from last year’s championship game. We can’t wait. We’ve been thinking about it 24-7.
“We are ready. We know what they do and they know what we do. We know they’re a disciplined team.’’
Osborne added that the Northwest offense has become more versatile since the first meeting – adding different wrinkles along the way.
If Northwest can win, Osborne likely will get a lot more high-fives in the hallway.
(Photo courtesy of Phoenix Northwest Christian)