Today, The Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club (GCSGC) is pleased to announce that senior quarterback Ty Thompson of Mesquite High School in Gilbert was named the 2020 Ed Doherty Award recipient at a formal luncheon. Members of the GCSGC Ed Doherty Award Selection Committee chose Thompson based on his outstanding performance throughout the 2020 season. Fifty-three athletes were nominated for the award, which is the highest performance honor that an Arizona high school football player can earn.
At the scaled back event, Thompson’s speech praised his family, teammates, coaches, the AIA, and even competing schools for his success and that of Arizona high school football’s during this stressful time for the community-building sport.
Thompson was named on GCSGC’s 50-player Week 3 Watch List™ released on October 12, 2020. Thompson finished his high school career with 9,891 passing yards, 100 TD passes, 62% completions & averages 291 yards/game. He also added 1,145 yards rushing and 20 TDs. As a senior, he led Mesquite to back-to-back 4A state titles while throwing for 3,431 yards, 34 TDs and averaged 381 yards game as the Wildcats finished 10-1. Thompson has signed with Oregon State University.
“As impressive as his playing statistics are, Ty is equally impressive off the field. He epitomizes the pursuit of excellence with integrity, great ability combined with diligence and hard work,” said Don Kile. “We are very proud to add his name to the prestigious Ed Doherty Award Trophy and we look forward to being proud of him for a very long time.”
The top five finalists included Thompson and the following athletes:
Jacob Cisneros – SR – RB – Boulder Creek HS (Anthem)
Cisneros completed his high school career with 5,824 all-purpose yards and 56 TDs (34 rush/15 rec/6 ret). During his senior season, he rushed for 1,552 yards, 21TDs, averaging 155yds/game; also tallied 666yds receiving and 10TDs, and added 634 return yards and 6TDs leading the Jaguars to the #1 seed in the 6A playoffs. Cisneros has signed with Pennsylvania State University.
Mikey Keene - SR/QB - Chandler HS
During his entire football career for the Wolves, Keene never lost a football game, including 23-0 as a varsity starting QB. His senior season was capped by winning a 2nd Open Division championship, and his 2,171 passing yards and 23 TDs were impressive considering many games were well in hand by halftime. A stellar career ends with 5,191 passing yards, 48 TDs and a 71% completion rate. He has signed with the University of Central Florida.
Hunter Ogle – SR – RB – Santa Cruz HS (Eloy)
Ogle led Santa Cruz to the 2A state title this season, rushing for 2,096yds, 25TDs, averaging 10.5yds per carry and 210yds/game. He finished his career with 4,656 rushing yards and 53TDs, and contributed 296 tackles and 15 TFLs on defense. He remains uncommitted heading into the February signing date.
Eli Sanders – SR – RB – Chandler HS
Patience is a virtue and Sanders exemplifies that as he waited for his turn as the lead back for Chandler in 2020. He broke out this season as a senior with 1,377 rushing yards, 23TDs while averaging 138yds/game. As the leader of the Wolves' ground attack, he made the offense one of the most feared in the state and one of the top in the nation as the Wolves captured their 2nd Open Division championship. He has not made a decision for where he will play next season.
To learn more about the Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club and previous Ed Doherty Award winners, visit http://www.gcsgridiron.com/.
About the Ed Doherty Award
For 34 years, the Ed Doherty Award has been the State of Arizona’s highest individual high school football honor and is awarded annually to the state’s most outstanding high school football player by the Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club. The Ed Doherty Award recognizes the player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity. The winner of the award epitomizes great ability combined with diligence, perseverance, and hard work. In addition to on-field performance, the Ed Doherty Award recognizes the well-rounded accomplishments of community involvement, school pride, and academics.
Programs supported through funds generated by the Ed Doherty Award Luncheon include the annual Ed Doherty Award Luncheon are focused on community building programs, ONE TEAM™ Academic Performance Program, heat exertional illness training and emergency protocols, equipment fitting certifications for high school support staff, and many highly specialized programs designed to create and maintain the physical and mental well-being of high school student athletes in Arizona.
The 2020 Ed Doherty Award Luncheon activated mandatory masks, temperature checks for all guests, restricted ticket availability to ensure a reduced gathering size, and outdoor stadium seating to create and maintain social and physical distancing.
About the Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club
The Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club is the steward of the Ed Doherty Award and is the most meaningful advocate of high school football in the State of Arizona. The mission of the Grand Canyon State Gridiron Club is to represent Arizona amateur athletics by bringing national attention to the extraordinary qualities of our young people and serve in the pursuit of athletic achievement, academic advancement and greater social affinity.