Airius Moore and Michael McCray are big hits as linebackers on their respective collegiate teams.
Moore, a Beavercreek High School graduate, continues to excel at North Carolina State. A 6-foot, 237-pound junior, Moore is second on the team with 26 solo stops and 16 assists.
He also has one fumble recovery and 6.5 stops for a loss. He was at his best in last Saturday’s 24-17 overtime loss at No. 3 Clemson, figuring in on eight tackles.
He’s started all six games this season for N.C. State (4-2), which is at No. 7 Louisville at noon on Saturday (ABC). Last season the former Beavers’ football/basketball standout led the Wolfpack in tackles with 77 and earned the Bill Cowher Award as the team’s linebacker MVP.
While in high school Moore trained with another former N.C. State football standout, Wayne grad Traimain Hall, who runs the Enhance U Sports Performance Academy in Huber Heights.
McCray, a Trotwood-Madison grad and senior at Michigan, has joined in the national anthem salute started by 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. McCray and several Wolverines teammates have raised their fists during the pregame song.
McCray recently wrote on Twitter, in part: “We want to apologize if you felt that we were being disrespectful to the National Anthem or the flag because we know people who have and who are still fighting for our country. Let’s come together as one and make (a) difference in this great country we live in.”
He signed off with the hashtags #GodBlessAmerican and #ComeTogetherAsOne.
McCray has overcome a series of injuries to have a breakout season with the Wolverines, who lead the nation in most defensive categories. He’s listed as a 6-4, 248-pounder and was named the Big Ten defensive player of the week following the season-opening drubbing of Hawaii. Michigan (6-0) was idle last week and hosts Illinois on Saturday.
• When Valley View and Oakwood play football, it’s not a good idea to leave early. Last year, the Lumberjacks scored 22 points in the fourth quarter to beat the Spartans, 29-28. A touchdown pass and two-point conversion with 8 seconds to play provided the winning points on the road.
Last Friday, the Jacks almost did it again, scoring 20 fourth-quarter points in a 42-41 home loss to the Spartans. Oakwood scored on Brian Erbe’s 1-yard run with 44 seconds to play, recovered an onside and scored with no time left on a 7-yard pass from Erbe to Nic Amongero. Oakwood went for two but failed.
Erbe, a junior, completed 34 of 57 passes for 466 yards and three TDs. He also ran for two short scores.
• Centerville is in contention for a rare golf sweep of the Division I state boys and girls golf titles this weekend. Both Elks teams qualified for the season-ending event at Columbus. The girls will play at Ohio State University’s Gray Course and the boys at OSU’s Scarlet.
Also advancing as individuals were Springfield’s Lucas Wells and Zach Crawford of Vandalia-Butler.
• The girls state tennis tournament is this weekend at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason. Also, the cross country district for most area teams is at Cedarville University on Saturday. The girls volleyball sectional and boys and girls soccer sectionals begin this week.