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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
Each week the Times will post a football question on the preps blog and publish the results on Wednesdays.
THIS WEEK'S QUESTION: Who is the county's best power back?
Bryce Williams, Osceola 26
Marcus Santini, Seminole 7
Daris Bellamy, Dunedin 5
Brynn Harvey, Largo 4
Matt Hyland, Palm Harbor U 4
Joey Cuda, Canterbury 4
Nick Schlereth, Countryside 3
Jared DiMaggio, Keswick Chr. 2
Josh Burch, Admiral Farragut 1
Ben Sams, St. Petersburg 1
Ricky Stephens, Boca Ciega 1
Lou Mason, Indian Rocks Chr. 1
BRYCE WILLIAMS, OSCEOLA
The past three seasons, Williams has played fullback, a position in which most players are lucky to get a few carries and slip out of the backfield as an option in the passing game.
Not at Osceola.
In the Warriors' Wing-T attack, coach George Palmer employs Williams, a 6-foot-3, 230-pound senior, to bowl over and blow past the opposition.
A big back who is merciless and light on his feet, Williams has splattered defenders routinely, powering for 243 yards and four touchdowns.
"It's more fun to go through someone than around someone," Williams said.
What is unusual about Williams is the array of skills he boasts. The ability to pound the ball inside is but a single line on his resume. When there is no daylight, he has the vision to find a seam, the agility to step over bodies and the speed to get outside. What's more, he can make people miss, break long runs and catch the ball out of the backfield.
But Williams, a moundlike man, has been more valuable moving the pile and running between the tackles the first three games. That's a big reason Osceola is 2-1 heading into this week's district game against Bradenton Bayshore.
"Bryce is definitely a load to bring down," Palmer said. "He puts his shoulder pads down, lowers his shoulders and tries to run people over. He really seems to enjoy that. I don't as much. I wish he'd avoid some those hits. But he really sets the tone for us."
NEXT WEEK'S QUESTION
Which county receiver has the best hands?
To vote, log on to our high school sports blog at http://blogs.tampabay.com/preps/.