Due to his combination of size, length and strength, Havelock linebacker Keion Joyner stands out on the field on Friday nights.
Though still a sophomore, Joyner, (6-foot-4, 200 pounds) has already accepted a spot to play in the Under Armour All-American Game in 2016. The Under Armour Game has been around since 2008 and is played in January of each year in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Joyner is the first football player from Craven County to participate in one of the nation’s two pre-eminent high school all-star games.
“It feels amazing to be the first one from the county to get to do it,” he said. “It’s been one of my goals and it just feels great to reach it so early.”
Joyner, already predicted to be a five-star player when the 2016 class rankings are released, holds scholarship offers from Auburn, South Carolina, Tennessee, LSU, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Miami, Virginia Tech, Ohio State, Penn State and others.
Earlier this season, Joyner received six scholarship offers in the same day from North Carolina, Auburn, Florida, N.C. State, Florida State and South Carolina.
“It’s all been crazy with the attention, but I’m not thinking very much about it right now,” Joyner said. “I’m just enjoying high school and football and trying to get ready for next season. I let schools just be there interested in me and I try to stay focused on football, grades in school and my family.”
He is already a two-time 3A state champion with Havelock. Last season, Joyner recorded 108 tackles – third on the team – and 7 1/2 sacks. He also snagged two interceptions, forced seven fumbles and recovered three.
His season-high of 13 tackles came in last year’s 21-13 state title victory over Concord.
Jordan Honeycutt is a reporter for the Sun Journal.