May 14, 2021

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Diamond In The Rough: Zach Atkins

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Zach Atkins is a class of 2022 Wide Receiver for Blue Valley Southwest High School in Overland Park, Overland Park, Kansas. Atkins stands in at 6’4 and 200 lbs., this build makes him an absolute threat for defenses on any kind of pass. His ability to win 50/50 balls is just unfair, DBs stand no chance and should prepare themselves to be on a highlight reel. His size is not the only thing that Atkins uses though, he also had the ability to gain separation from any defender. With his route running ability and speed, he leaves defenders lost and frustrated as Atkins walks into the endzone. His work on the football field does not outshine his work in the classroom though, as he currently has a 3.7 GPA. Atkins has shown that he is an exciting player to watch, and we should be excited to see what he will do in this upcoming season.

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When did you start playing football and why? I started playing in fifth grade and then I fell in love with the sport, the physicality, and everything about it.

Favorite moment of your career so far? Winning back-to-back regional Championships.

What current or past player do you think you play like the most? My style of play is like Mike Evans, we both have big frames, run crisp routes, and can both win contested passes.

Do you play any sports outside of football, and what do you think you adds to your game? Lacrosse, it helps a lot with conditioning also helps with my agility and quickness.

Do you have any pregame rituals? Before games I pray and listen to my playlist.

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Going into this season, what are you looking forward to? I’m looking forward to being a team captain I’m excited to lead the team.

Do you have a quote or anything that pushes you daily? “Everything negative– pressure, challenges — is all an opportunity for me to rise.”  – Kobe Bryant.

What do you think a college would get out of you as a player? I’m an extremely hard worker, I’m a team first player, I’m organized on the field and in the classwork.

What motivates you to get up and train every day? My motivation is improving every day to become a better player and person.

What do you think makes you a good teammate? My ability to hold guys accountable, when they do something great or something not great, every team needs a good leader to be great and I think I fill that role.

Who has pushed you most in your football journey? My parents, trainer, and coaches, they want me to be the best player and person I can be, and without their support I wouldn’t be where I’m at today.

What do you think the best part of your game is? My size, I’m a big size matchup against most corners, I think I do everything well, I got good speed, size and everything.

Would you consider yourself a possession, speed, or route running specialist? In our offense I’m best at the deep ball, if you throw it up to me, I’m going to catch it.

Do you prefer to be pressed by the DB or not? It really depends on the situation, there are some situations or routes where I like to be pressed, but it really depends.

Favorite route? I love most routes, but my favorites are fades and posts.

Favorite skill move in open field? I use my size and speed to juke, I also throw a stiff arm in there.

Inside or outside routes? Inside route, there is more space to operate and run.

What is the best catch you’ve had made in game? In our regional game, it was a 75-yard pass, and I went up against 2 defenders and scored.

What are you thinking pre snap? I’m cool calm and collected, I’m seeing how the DB is playing and I make a plan on how I’m going to run this route.

What are some things you want to work on most at receiver? There is always room to improve in everything, but the main thing is getting bigger stronger and faster.

Favorite part of playing receiver? The impact that we have on the field, we can change the play with one snap, I’ve always been receiver and I fell in love with it.