When a combination of immense physical talent and a true dedication to one’s craft combine on an athletic field, it is truly a special happening.
That is what transpired on area gridirons this season as Coatesville sophomore running back Aaron Young ran roughshod through the Ches-Mont League. Young, who is 5-foot-10 and 175 pounds and runs the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds, rushed for 1,408 yards, scored 24 touchdowns and averaged 10.8 yards per carry. Young also was used to throw the occasional pass, and was a threat to catch the ball coming out of the backfield.
Young was one of the main reasons the Red Raiders won the Ches-Mont National Division title with a perfect 6-0 mark in the league, and had a 11-2 overall record, winning two District 1 Class 6A playoff games and reaching the semifinals of the district playoffs. It is for these accomplishments that Aaron Young is the Daily Local News All-Area Football Player of the Year.
“I play for my teammates, the fans who come out to see us play and for the city of Coatesville,” Young said. “We are very proud of Coatesville and we know how much the fans want us to win and support us so we have to give them our all every play. That is why I work so hard in the offseason.”
Coatesville head coach Matt Ortega kept Young out of many games this season after half-time because the Red Raiders were routing opponents. Otherwise, Young’s stats would be even more impressive than they already are.
“Aaron works so hard and is such a great kid,” Ortega said. “He got so much faster from his freshman year and that is because he runs track and plays basketball. The track coaches really got his speed up and he should be even faster next season because he is playing those sports again this year. Aaron carried us early in the year before Ricky (quarterback Ortega) got comfortable. Aaron has great speed and he has a knack for getting the extra yards after he is hit. The special ones do that and he is definitely that.”
Coatesville and Young really found their way in the fifth game of the season when they went into Kottmeyer Satdium and knocked Downingtown East from the unbeaten ranks with a 40-8 win. Young rushed for two touchdowns and caught a touchdown pass in the win, and East head coach Mike Matta was quite impressed withe the Coatesville sophomore.
“No. 4 (Young), was a threat to score every time he touched the ball,” Matta said. “It did not matter they threw it to him, he threw it himself or ran the football. He has elite speed and if you have one breakdown he could score from anywhere on the field. When you game-planned you had to constantly be aware of where he was, which in turn opened up areas for the other extremely talented players on the team.”
Ortega also appreciated the work ethic Young displayed and talked about his passion for football.
“He is special in that he goes out every game with a mindset to do something special to help the team win,” Ortega said. “And he works just as hard in the spring by running track and that has really made him more special. He has the speed all the special ones have and he puts in the time and work to make himself a better player.”
North Penn head coach Dick Beck saw Young up close when his Knights finally ended Coatesville’s season in the District 1 semifinals.
“No. 4 is a special player,” Beck said. “He is already really something and I can’t believe he is only a sophomore.”