Despite the fact his team lost last week to the Longview Lobos, Marshall wide receiver Demarcus Williams caught six passes for 143 yards and three touchdowns and as a senior, he has high hopes for his final season of high school football, whether it be for himself or his team.
“I want to get that record, most (receiving) touchdowns in a season record,” Williams said. That’s my goal this year. I hope that I achieve that.
“I’ll do anything for my team,” he continued. “There’s no selfishness in me. I do anything I can, play any position I can, just to win for my team. I put my team first before me.”
Marshall athletic director and head football coach Jake Griedl said Williams has taken on a larger leadership role now that he’s a senior.
“DeDe has always been a natural-born leader,” Griedl said. “It’s probably taken us to this point to get him to lock into the right stuff and it’s been a process. It’s a process with every kid and he’s really answered the call in terms of being a senior and having that senior role. Obviously, even though we’re 1-1, in the first two games, he’s had a bunch of success and individual and that’s just a testament to his work ethic and what he can do as a player. He’s a loud voice in the locker room and he’s a guy who has the ears of his teammates.”
This summer, Williams learned just how much his teammates look up to him.
“They see if I’m doing great and running hard, they should fall into place and do the same,” Williams explained. “This summer, I stopped coming to workouts for a little bit because I got a job. Coach (Lupe) Florez called me one afternoon and he was like, ‘The team’s not working hard because you’re not here. When you’re here, you change the mindset of the team.’ I said, ‘Yes sir.’ And I came and I was running full speed. I looked and I noticed everybody was following me. They were working hard because I was working hard.”
“He’s learning how to be more vocal but a lot of kids, when they step into a larger leadership role, they also learn that when you become more vocal, that also creates accountability for yourself,” Griedl said. “He’s learning to be more vocal and do things the right way with his actions and also vocally. That’s why he’ having the success that he’s been having and why he’s stepped into the leadership role.”
Griedl said he and his staff have high expectations for the senior wide receiver.
“He’s a college-caliber-football player,” Griedl said. “We expect him to improve every week regardless of his past success. He knows his past success isn’t going to help him in this week’s game or next week’s game. He’s got to create that each and every week and that’s just part of maturing and growing, so that’s what we push him to do.”
After graduating from Marshall, Williams hopes to continue his football career at the next level.
“I want to go to college and further my football career,” he explained. “Hopefully everything will work out.”
“He’s gotten quite a few Division II offers,” Griedl said. “I think he’s a Division I caliber kid, he’s just got to find the right roster. Not everyone can offer a five-foot-seven receiver, but he’s one of those kids who, if Division I schools have a spot on their roster for that kid, they can definitely find ways to utilize him.”
Even if he’s not able to play at the next level, Williams said he hopes to coach the game he loves.
“Kinesiology,” he said when asked what he plans to study in college. “I like working with kids and talking with kids about being great.”
Until then, he has the rest of his senior year ahead of him and his Mavericks are taking on McKinney North tonight. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. at Ron Poe Stadium in McKinney.