SCHOOL: W.J. Mouat (Abbotsford)
FRESHMAN’S FUTURE: Ohio
by Howard Tsunamura, The Province Subway “Head of the Class 2014” feature
ABBOTSFORD — There seems to be something awfully fitting about the fact that running back Maleek Irons will continue the next chapter of his football life in a place called Athens, because the best way to describe his feats on the gridiron with Abbotsford’s W.J. Mouat Hawks is to call them Olympian.
How else can you describe the impact of a player who authored his own personal page in the B.C. high school record books, and in doing so created an entirely new set of metrics against which every future running back in this province will be measured against?
In seeking a way to most succinctly sum up the breadth of his accomplishments over two magical senior varsity seasons, we here at The Province simply dubbed him The Triple Crown.
As Irons heads off to join the Ohio University Bobcats in the quaint college burg of Athens, he does so as the owner of the three most significant B.C. high school rushing records:
*Most yards in a career with 6,175.
*Most yards in a season with 3,204 (2012).
*Most yards in a game with 491 (2012).
“I know this might sound funny,” the humble Irons replies in response to questions that inevitably come concerning his offensive output, “but I never really cared about any of that stuff.”
Indeed Irons’ only goal over his senior season was to help lead his team to the Subway Bowl B.C. Triple A title, an honour that eluded him over his career with the Hawks.
“Hopefully,” he said, “my championship will come at Ohio.”
Already being looked upon as a freshman of influence by the coaches at Ohio U, Irons indeed appears to have chosen a new home where he will be able to contribute quickly, and in a very meaningful way for head coach Frank Solich, a former fullback and head coach with the famed Nebraska Cornhuskers.
Already, the chatter is building in Athens for the arrival of the B.C. kid with the huge numbers on his resume. Irons knows it, and he accepts the challenge.
“They already refer to me as an all-star, so I have some big shoes to fill,” Irons says of his new team. “There is pressure, but I think I can deal with it.”