RUSTON, La. — For as talented of a football player as senior defensive back B.J. Green is on the field, he is that much more impressive as a student at Ruston High School.
So it’s not remotely hard to imagine Green being named to the National Football Foundation’s Ark-La-Tex Scholar-Athlete Watch List this week.
“It’s an honor to be named to this watch list,” Green said. “Ruston’s teachers make sure you get in class and get your work done. When I’m in the classroom, I’m respectful and go in with a purpose.”
NFF Ark-La-Tex Scholar-Athlete Watch List members must have a 3.2 grade point average or better, must be key players for their teams, and must participate in non-sports extracurricular activities at their schools.
“I can’t say enough positive things about BJ, or we’d be here all day,” Ruston head coach Jerrod Baugh said. “I’ve known him since he was in junior high, and he’s always been one of those kids that goes the extra distance that you need him to go in order to be successful. Anything you ask him to do, and really stuff you don’t ask him to do, he does so well. You can tell by his grades that he works hard in the class room and has some great ACT scores. I think it’s really says a lot about our football program that he leads his teammates by example. He doesn’t have to say much; he leads by working hard. He’s a joy to be around our program.”
Annually, after each season, the NFF’s S.M. McNaughton Chapter solicits nominations for its scholarship program, and as many as eight senior scholar-athletes are honored at a banquet in Shreveport.
This Watch List is designed to provide recognition for not just the ultimate scholarship winners, but all of the young men in the Ark-La-Tex, including Louisiana’s entire 318 area code and from Lincoln Parish, who are high-achieving senior football players.
Three other students in the parish were also listed. The group of 30 high school seniors named to the National Football Foundation Ark-La-Tex Scholar-Athlete Watch List:
Justin Aaron, DB, Natchitoches Central High School
Caleb Aillet, C, C.E. Byrd High School
Sedric Applewhite Jr., WR/DE, Bossier High School
Tonzaiha Bland, OL/DL, Logansport High School
Caylin Demars, RB, Natchitoches Central High School
Graeme Fidelak, WR, St. Mary’s High School
B.J. Green, DB, Ruston High School
Connor Heard, OL/C, Minden High School
Evan Howe, Linebacker, North DeSoto High School
John Jordan, DB, C.E. Byrd High School
Kelvin Kinney, QB, North DeSoto High School
Gavin LaGrange, OL/DL, St. Mary’s High School
Dqavion Lemons, OL, Southwood High School
Chandler Lytle, LB, Haughton High School
Brayson McHenry, QB, Texas High School, Texarkana
James David Miller, OL/DL, Ouachita Christian High School
Kyle Monroe, QB, Fouke High School
R.J. Moore, WR/K/P, Benton High School
Jake Pieri, DL, Haughton High School
Mitchell Ramsey, RB, Byrd High School
Carson Riley, LB/OT, Cedar Creek High School
Jatareon Robinson, LB, North Webster High School
Davis Sellers, DE/TE, Benton High School
Joshua Sewell, WR. Haughton High School
Seth Smith, OG, Cedar Creek High School
Tre Smith, QB, Red River High School
Tyler Sullivan, WR/DB, Plain Dealing High School
Ryan Todd, DB, C.E. Byrd High School
Tristan Wiley, WR/DB, Ouachita Christian High School
Jed Worthy, CB/TB, Cedar Creek High School
Photo credit: Reggie McLeroy
The NFF McNaughton Chapter is led by president Leo Sanford, a Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame member and former All-Pro linebacker for the Chicago Cardinals, and a center on the 1958 NFL champion Baltimore Colts. Other board members are Dennis Bamburg, Jerry Byrd Jr., Toni Goodin, Doug Ireland, Curt Joiner, Bill McConathy, Tag Rome and Terry Slack.
Additionally, KTBS Channel 3 in Shreveport is honoring the memory and legacy of former NFF Board member Bob Griffin, the iconic sportscaster at KSLA and then KTBS for over 50 years, by weekly presentations of a Griffin’s Game Ball to one of the players on the NFF Scholar-Athlete Watch List.
The winners are being featured by KTBS weekly, and are eligible for a separate Griffin’s Game Ball Scholar-Athlete Scholarship at the close of the 2021 season, presented by KTBS. Demars was spotlighted after the Chiefs beat Airline in the District 1-5A opener.