BRISTOL, Va. — Virginia High’s Randall White could be the best high school tight end to play in the Tri-Cities area since Elizabethton’s Jason Witten.
Given Witten’s All-American career at the University of Tennessee and subsequent stardom as an All-Pro end for the Dallas Cowboys, those are pretty high hopes to lay on the 6-foot-5, 240-pound Bearcat senior.
But there’s no getting around it. This kid is a specimen. At least one former NFL coach has already compared White to a Dallas tight end — albeit one 20 years older than Witten.
“When we were down (at North Carolina), Butch Davis compared Randy to Jay Novacek,” Virginia High coach Terry Smith said.“That kind of got our eyes big. But that’s who he compared him to.”
White had been courted by Virginia Tech, Tennessee, North Carolina State and Clemson, most of whom also were intrigued by his potential as a defensive end. But Davis and North Carolina got a commitment from the big Bearcat this summer based on the Tar Heels’ intentions to primarily utilize White as a tight end and H-back.
“I think that’s all they need me for, although I might be used some at deep snapper,” said White, who fills that special teams function for the Bearcats in addition to his standout defensive role as a flex linebacker.
During his junior track and field season, the brawny White attracted attention as a field events performer. He developed into a consistent 50-footer in the shot put, finishing third in the Group AA state track and field meet with a throw of 52-93/4 inches.
White’s exploits wearing sprinting spikes this past spring make for much bigger news once forwarded to the context of football. He’s clocked a 23.9 running the 200 meter dash. In the state meet, he registered a 55.8 running the second leg of the 4x400m relay.
For a guy his size, that is really moving.
Smith wants to see White get his touches. As Gate City learned last year, the Bearcat BMOC has great hands and is definitely a big play threat.
“People will be looking out for him, of course. But the rest of our staff is working hard to fit him in and mold him in with the rest of our players, as far as getting him open and things like that,” Smith said. “He just loves to play the game. He has a lot of fun and we enjoy it. He has a great attitude.”