Having recently been selected as one of Region IV’s best offensive lineman, Carroll County’s Lucas Holder will now get the opportunity to play against the nation’s best.
A senior left tackle, Holder has been selected along with about 100 other high school seniors to play in the NUC All-American North-South Senior Game to be held Dec. 22 at Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
“Man, it just feels gratifying because I’ve worked really hard and our team has worked really hard to accomplish all these things,” Holder said. “It’s just a lot of reflection of a lot of hard work I’ve put in, but also the team has put in, too.”
Holder joins the likes of 2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel, former Virginia Tech standout Tyrod Taylor and current college quarterback standouts Tajh Boyd (Clemson) and Michael Mariota (Oregon), who have all played in the NUC All-American North-South Senior Game.
“A lot of those players from two years ago are making big-time headlines now. There are some pretty big defensive ends and big linemen that have played in it, too,” Holder said. “At first I thought it was joke. I was reading through all the people that have played in it, and I was thinking, ‘How did I get picked?’ But I am very grateful and very blessed they did pick me. I’m sure it will be a fun experience.”
College and high school football writers from ESPN.com, 247sports.com and rivals.com are expected to be at the game. Holder will also most likely be joined by several of the nation’s top high school football recruits from the Rivals 150 and ESPN 150 lists. Obviously, playing in the game will help the Carroll senior increase his exposure to college scouts. Right now, he said Virginia Tech, James Madison, Liberty and VMI have been showing him the most interest, while Ivy League school Columbia has offered him a partial academic scholarship to play football.
“It would be cool to go down there and maybe talk to a few schools and possibly get offered by a few schools that haven’t seen me play,” Holder said. “The only thing holding me back is I would like to get a few offers close to home. Right now a lot of coaching staffs are being shuffled around and a lot of teams are looking at possible transfer opportunities, people leaving the team, things like that. Overall, offensive lineman get offered later in the process, so a lot of it is just wait and see what happens at this point.”
While Holder said he continues to learn details about the game, he believes it will be televised by Fox SportsSouth or a similar station. It will be streamed live on the internet through one of David Schuman’s websites, the nationally-renowned recruiting expert who annually hosts the All-American game.
Holder will compete in the game as an offensive lineman, but he’s not sure yet if he will line up as a tackle or guard. The 6-6, 270-pound senior will join his All-American teammates in Myrtle Beach on Dec. 18 for a week of practice before the Dec. 22 game. While there, participants will also be versed in recruiting seminars of what recruits can and can’t do, be interviewed by national sportswriters, and many other events geared toward helping high school seniors prepare for life as college football players.
“I think it’s going to be pretty cool,” Holder said. “And I just want to say that I really appreciate all the support from teachers, fans and parents that have helped me and the rest of the team take shape. We have a pretty good support staff here and a lot of people are concerned with where I am going. Just about everyday people ask me where I am going to school. That is one thing I can’t tell them positively. I’m just sitting back and being patient.”
Holder will also be paraticipating with teammate Chris Smoot in an upcoming Virginia vs. Tennessee All-Star game this spring in Bristol.