Fine wins Gatorade Football Player of the Year

BY JAMI MURPHY
Former Reporter
12/11/2014 10:39 AM
LOCUST GROVE, Okla. – Seventeen-year-old Cherokee Nation citizen Mason Fine received the 2014-15 Gatorade Football Player of the Year for Oklahoma on Dec. 4 at Locust Grove High School, the school’s first winner of the award.

The junior helped lead the Pirates to a 13-0 record, as of Dec. 9, and a playoff berth in Class 3A. He said being recognized with the award meant a great deal not just to him but also to his team, coaching staff, family and community.

“It’s a huge honor to be awarded with that, and not so much as an individual goal, but as a team goal. It just shows how much we work here, (and how much) we work everyday,” he said.

Mason said he was contacted about the award around mid-season and had complete paperwork for it. He didn’t learn he had won until the morning of the presentation. He added that his teammates and coaching staff have been supportive.

“You know they’re all happy for me. We’re all glad to be a part of this award and accomplishment. It shows where our team is at,” Mason said.

Dale and Terrah, his parents, said they were so thankful for everyone that’s had a hand in Mason’s life.

“They have been a huge part of Mason’s life and have helped him in so many ways. This is a huge honor for our son and our family. We are very proud of him and his team’s accomplishment,” Terrah said.

According to a Gatorade Player of the Year release, it’s the 30th year of honoring the “nation’s best high school athletes.” It also states the award recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field and distinguishes Fine as Oklahoma’s best high school football player.

Fine joins an elite list of past award-winners, including Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, California), Wes Welker (1999-00, Heritage Hall HS), Terrell Suggs (1999-00, Hamilton HS, Arizona), Anquan Boldin (1998-99, Pahokee HS, Florida) and Jerome Bettis (1989-90, Mackenzie HS, Michigan).

Fine carries a 4.0 grade point average, is No. 1 in his class and serves as junior class president. He also has served as a youth football instructor and is a member of the National Honor Society and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Mason said his future goals are winning the “gold ball” or state championship in football, having another great season his senior year and going to college on a football or academic scholarship.

“Playing football is a very good possibility in college. Football is my love, and I would love to play football as long as I could,” he said.

He added that he couldn’t have won the award without the positive influences in his life.

“I do want to thank my teammates from the offensive line to my receivers to even the defense for stopping the opponent and getting us the ball back. Even to the scout team defense when our offense is playing at practice,” Mason said. “I got to thank all my coaches, you know, my parents especially for being there always, my family, friends and God. Give God all the glory.”

The Gatorade Player of the Year program recognizes one winner in Washington, D.C., and each of the 50 states annually in high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, boys and girls track and field. It also awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.

To view Mason’s award video Click here.

Mason Fine’s statistics for the 2014-15 season

Passing yards and touchdowns: 4,469 yards, 65 TDs

Passing completion percentage: 69 percent – 292 completions of 424 attempts

Rushing totals: 134 attempts, 522 yards, 10 TDs

According to a Gatorade release, Fine beat the previous single-season Oklahoma records of 3,916 passing yards and 54 TD passes.
ᏣᎳᎩ

ᎧᎶᏇᎦᏗ, ᎣᎦᎵᎰᎻ. – ᎦᎵᏆᏚ ᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᏣᎳᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎨᎳ Mason Fine ᎤᎩᏒ ᎾᎿ ᏔᎵ ᏯᎦᏴᎵ ᏂᎦᏚ ᎠᎴ ᏍᎩᎦᏚ ᎤᏕᏘᏴᏌᏗᏒ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᎾᎿ ᎤᏕᏘᏴᏌᏗᏒᎢ ᎾᎿ ᎣᎦᎵᎰᎹ ᎾᎿ ᎥᏍᎩᏱ ᏅᎩᏁ ᎾᎿ ᎧᎶᏇᎦᏛ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏧᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᏧᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ ᎢᎬᏱ ᎤᎾᏓᏠᏒ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᏌᏍᏛᎢ.

ᎾᏍᎩ ᏌᏚᏏᏁ ᏗᎧᏂᏙ ᎤᎵᏍᏕᎸᎲᎢ ᎤᎾᏓᏠᎯᏍᏗ Pirates ᎾᏍᎩ 13-0 ᏄᎵᏍᏔᏁ, ᎾᎿ ᎥᏍᎩᏱ ᏐᏁᎵᏁᎢ ᎠᎴ ᏚᎾᏁᎶᏁᎢ berth ᎾᎿ class 3A. ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎤᎾᏓᏙᏟᏍᏗ ᎨᏒ ᎠᏓᏒᏅᎢ ᎢᎦ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᏓᏅᏓᏗᏍᏗ ᎨᏒᎢ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏚᎵᎪᏒᎢ, ᏧᎾᏘᏂᏙᎯ, ᏏᏓᏁᎸ ᎠᎴ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ.

“ᎢᎦ ᎤᏔᎾ ᎤᎾᏓᎵᎮᎵᏍᏙᏗ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎯᎠ, ᎠᎴ ᏝᏙ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᎦ ᎠᏏᏴᏫ ᏱᎩ, ᎠᏎᏍᎩᏂ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏗᎵᎪᎯ. ᎬᏂᎨᏒ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏗ ᎢᎦ ᎣᎦᎵᎪᏒ, (ᎠᎴ ᎢᎦ)ᏌᏊ ᏙᎩᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲ ᏂᏓᏙᏓᏫᏒᎢ,” ᎤᏛᏅᎢ.

Mason ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎠᏥᏃᎯᏎᎴ ᎾᎿ ᏛᎩᏏᏒ ᎤᏓᏒᏅ ᏯᏛᎾ ᎠᏰᏟ ᎤᏂᎩᏓ ᏓᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎬᎢ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏍᏆᏙᏅ ᎨᏒᎢ. ᏝᏃ ᏙᎯᏳ ᏳᏅᏖ ᎤᏓᏒᏅ ᎠᎴ ᎤᎩᏒ ᎾᎯᏳ ᏌᎾᎴ ᎠᏥᏁᏗᎢ. ᎤᏅᏙᏃ ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᎠᎴ ᏧᎾᏘᏂᏙᎯ ᎢᎦ ᎬᏩᎫᏍᏓᎥᎢ.

“ᏣᏅᏔᏍ ᏂᎦᏓ ᎠᎾᎵᎮᎵᎦ ᎠᎩᎩᏒᎢ. ᏂᎦᏓ ᎣᏣᎵᎮᎵᎦ ᎯᎠ ᎬᎩᏁᎸᎢ ᎠᎴ ᏃᎦᏛᏁᎸᎢ. ᎬᏂᎨᏒ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎣᏥᏙᎾᎥ ᏦᏣᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ,” ᎤᏛᏅ Mason.

Dale ᎠᎴ Terrah, ᎠᏧᏣ ᏧᎦᏴᎵᎨ, ᎠᏂᏃᎮᏍᎬ ᏓᎾᎵᎮᎵᏤᎲ ᎾᏂᎥ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᏁᎳᏗᏙᎸ ᎨᏒ ᎾᎿ Mason’s ᎠᎴᏂᏙᎲᎢ.

“ᎤᎪᏓ ᎤᏁᎳᏗᏙᎸ ᎾᎿ Mason’s ᎠᎴᏂᏙᎲ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏂᏍᏕᎸᏓ ᎤᎪᏓ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ ᎨᏒᎢ. ᎤᎪᏓ ᎠᎵᎮᎵᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎣᎩᏁᏣ ᎠᏧᏣ ᎠᎴ ᏂᎦᏓ ᎣᏥᏏᏓᏁᎸᎢ. ᎣᏍᏓᎵᎡᎵᎪ ᎠᎴ ᏂᎦᏓ ᎤᎾᎵᎪᎯ ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬ Terrah.

ᏚᎾᏙᎵᏤᎲ ᎾᏍᎩ Gatorade ᏓᏂᏁᎲ ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ ᎾᎿ ᏑᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎨᏒ ᎤᏂᏃᎮᏓ, ᎾᎿ ᏦᏍᎪ ᎾᏕᏘᏯ ᏂᏓᎾᎵᎮᎵᏍᏗᏍᎪ ᎾᎿ “ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏬᏌᏂᏴ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏗᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᎩ ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ.” ᎾᏍᎩᏍᏊ ᎪᏪᎳ ᎠᎦᎵᎡᎵᏍᏗᏍᎬ ᏝᏙ ᏬᏌᏂᏴ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ, ᎾᏍᏊᏍᎩᏂ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏓᏕᎶᏆᏍᎬ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏯᏛᏁ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏧᏅᏗ ᎠᎴ ᏄᏍᏛ ᎾᏛᏁᎲ ᎦᎵᏦᏕ ᎠᏯᎥ ᎠᎴ ᏙᏯ ᎡᏙᎲ ᎤᏠᏯ ᎾᎿ Fine ᎾᎿ ᎣᎦᎵᎰᎹ ᏬᏌᏂᏴ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏗᏕᎶᏆᏍᎩ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᎬ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ.

Fine ᏚᎵᎪᏁᎸ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᎨᎪᏪᎵ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏠᏯ ᎤᎾᏓᏒᏅ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᎠᏌᏍᏛᎢ, ᎯᎢᎾ ᏚᎾᏙᎥ Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, California), Wes Welker (1999-00, Heritage Hall HS), Terrell Suggs (1999-00, Hamilton HS, Arizona), Anquan Boldin (1998-99, Pahokee HS, Florida) ᎠᎴ Jerome Bettis (1989-90, Mackenzie HS, Michigan).

Fine ᏧᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ ᏚᎾᎥ ᏓᏕᎶᏆᏍᎬ 4.0 , ᎾᏍᎩ ᏌᏊ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏓᏕᎶᏆᏍᎬᎢ ᎠᎴ ᎾᎿ ᏗᎦᏂᏙᎯ ᎨᏒ ᎤᎬᏫᏳᎯ. ᏃᎴᏍᏊ ᎠᏫᏄᏣ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏗᎨᏲᎲᏍᎩ ᎨᏒ ᎠᎴ ᎨᎳ ᎾᎿ ᎬᎾᏕᎾ ᏧᏂᎸᏉᏓ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬ ᎠᎴ Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Mason ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎤᏩᎫᏗᏗᏒ ᏚᏭᎪᏛ ᎤᏓᏠᎯᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ “ᎠᏕᎳ ᏓᎶᏂᎨ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ” ᎠᎴ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᏭᏍᎦᏎᏛ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ, ᎤᎭ ᏐᎢ ᏗᎬᏩᏁᎶᏗ ᎾᎿ ᏔᎳᏚᏏᏁ ᏕᎦᏂᏙᎲ ᎠᎴ ᎾᎿ ᏩᎦᎸᎳᏗᏴ ᏓᏕᎶᏆᎥ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᏓᏁᎶᏅᎯ ᎠᎴ ᏧᏕᎶᏆᏍᏙᏗ.

“ᏓᏁᎶᎲᏍᎬ ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏧᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ ᏓᏕᎶᏆᎥ ᏧᏁᎶᏗᎢ. ᎠᏴᏖᏍᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᎩᎸᏉᏓ, ᎠᎴ ᏱᏕᎦᏁᎶᎲᎦ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᏆᏚᎵᏍᎬ ᎢᎪᎯᏓ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ.

ᏃᎴᏍᏊ ᎾᎿ Ꮭ ᏱᎨᏩᏓᏒᏁ ᎯᎠ ᏧᏓᏒᏅᎢ ᎢᏳᏃ ᎤᎵᏗᏢ ᎠᏁᏙᎯ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎬᏩᏟᏃᎮᏗᏍᎬᎢ ᎠᎴᏂᏙᎲᎢ.

“ᎠᏆᏚᎵ ᎦᏥᎵᎡᎵᏤᏗ ᏦᏣᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᏂᏓᏳᏓᎴᏅ ᎾᎿ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᏱᏙ ᏩᏁᎯ ᎠᏍᏆᏞᏍᎩ ᏃᎴᏍᏆ ᎠᏂᎭᎷᎩᏍᎩ ᎠᎴᏫᏍᏙᏗᏍᎪ ᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᎤᏂᎩᏍᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ. ᏃᎴᏍᏊ scout ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᏴᏙ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᎠᎾᎵᏏᎾᎲᏍᏗᏍᎬ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬ Mason. “ᏂᎦᏓ ᏗᎾᏓᏘᏂᏙᎯ ᎦᏥᎵᎡᎵᏤ, ᏣᏅᏔᏛ, ᏗᎩᎦᏴᎵᎨ ᏙᎯᏳᎢ ᏂᎪᎯᎸ ᎠᏁᏙᎰ ᎪᎱᏍᏗ ᏯᏆᏛᏁᎵ, ᏏᏓᏁᎸ, ᏗᏆᎵ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏁᎳᏅᎯ. ᎤᏁᎳᏅᎯ ᏥᏁᎰ ᏂᎦᏓ ᎠᎵᎮᎵᏤᏗ.”

ᎾᏍᎩ Gatorade ᏓᏂᏅᏁᎰ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᎾᎿ ᎤᏂᎪᎮ ᏌᏊ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ ᎾᎿ Washington, D. C., ᎠᎴ ᏌᏊᎭ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎯᎦᏍᎪ ᏗᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᏚᏙᏢᏒ ᏑᎶᏘᏴᏓ ᎢᏳᏓᎵ ᎾᎿ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ, ᎠᏂᎨᏳᏣ volleyball, ᎠᏂᏧᏣ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᎨᏳᏣ cross country, ᎠᏂᏧᏣ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᎨᏳᏣ ᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ, ᎠᏂᏧᏣ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᎨᏳᏣ soccer, ᎠᎳᏍᎦᎶᏗ, ᏩᏂᎨᏍᏆᏞᏍᏗ, ᎠᏂᏧᏣ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᎨᏳᏣ track and field. ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏌᏊ ᎬᎾᎶᎾ ᏗᏁᎶᎲᏍᎦ ᏑᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎨᏒ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏌᏊᎭ ᎨᏒ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏥᏕᎪᏪᎳ.

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