A few missteps cost Eli Correa his senior season at Grace Davis High School, but that won’t be the final chapter in his football career.
Correa has been named an Offense-Defense All-American and will take part in the 47-year-old organization’s All-American Bowl the week of Dec. 26-31.
The All-American Bowl will feature the top 88 high school players, selected from local and regional camps this summer. Notable alumni include 2015 NFL MVP Cam Newton, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant and Cleveland Browns defensive back Joe Haden.
A three-year varsity player, Correa was dismissed from the team by coach Tim Garcia midway through the 2015 season. The 5-foot-8, 175-pounder sat three games for disciplinary reasons before his dismissal.
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“He made some bad choices,” his mother, Lisa Correa, wrote in an email to The Bee, “but never gave up.”
Correa finished the academic year on independent study.
Garcia is thrilled to see Correa’s career back on track and hopes this opportunity will help him find a foothold at the next level.
“On Friday nights, you want him strapped up in a helmet,” Garcia said of Correa, who visited with his former coach during a Spartan practice last week. “He’s a very smart football player and gifted. He’s one of those kids that plays above and beyond his size. He’s got a big heart and he’s very competitive.
“It’s nice to see him continuing to chase that childhood dream.”
Correa will take part in a week’s worth of events and activities in Atlanta, culminating with the senior bowl game at Kennesaw State University. The itinerary will include combines, an underclassmen showcase, coaching clinics and conventions, according to the website.
Correa was selected as a linebacker and running back, but he was also evaluated as a fullback, safety and kick returner.
He was the No. 1-ranked linebacker and fourth-best running back at an O-D camp in the Bay Area. Nationally, he was rated the 10th-best in each position group. There were 80 camps nationwide.
If you’d like to sponsor Correa’s trip, visit http://bit.ly/2aWa4cQ.