- Special Sections
- Public Notices
All Wade Holtsclaw wanted was one more carry.
After recording just one rushing attempt in the first half of Saturday’s National Guard Border Bowl, the frustrated John Hardin senior made a plea to the Kentucky All-Stars coaching staff during halftime.
“I told the coaches if they just put me in one more time, I could show them,” Holtsclaw said. “I told the coaches at half if they’d give me an opportunity in the second half, I could show them what I could do and they did. The first series I started heating up.”
He wasn’t kidding.
Holtsclaw recorded six carries in the second half and finished with what he said was around 80 yards to lead the Kentucky All-Stars to a 29-27 win Saturday night over the Tennessee All-Stars at the University of the Cumberlands’ James H. Taylor II Stadium in Williamsburg. It was an eye-opening performance, leading him to be named the Border Bowl Offensive MVP and to the All-Border Bowl team.
Holtsclaw said he didn’t even have his first carry until just before halftime, getting it on a rush from the Kentucky 1-yard line. He garnered about two yards and he wanted to show more.
The second half he did. But Holtsclaw acknowledged he didn’t think it would earn him a major honor.
“Being named Offensive MVP, I didn’t expect it at all because I thought I did just pretty decent in the game and I didn’t expect my performance being better than other people’s performances,” he said.
Kentucky scored on a deep pass with less than a minute remaining and held off Tennessee to preserve its comeback victory, giving it just its second win the Border Bowl’s six-year history, according to the Cincinnati Enqurier.
Since helping his team to victory, Holtsclaw said he’s received five calls (three Saturday and two Sunday) from colleges – though he wouldn’t reveal which ones. He plans on going on some more college visits in the coming months.
The 2012 News-Enterprise/Coaches’ All-Area Offensive Player of the Year, Holtsclaw rushed for 1,334 yards and scored 24 total touchdowns (21 on the ground) to help lead the Bulldogs (13-1) to the Class 5-A state semifinals. He recorded seven 100-yard performances, had the sixth-best single-season rushing total in school history and scored a touchdown in all but one game.
He’s had a busy two months, playing deep into the high school playoffs and competing in the NUC All-American Game in Myrtle Beach, S.C., in December before Saturday’s all-star game.
Holtsclaw made the trip with his parents, Jason and Tracy, 14-year-old sister Emily and best friend Domonick Brown, a John Hardin senior and Eastern Kentucky University football commit.
Although Holtsclaw is a little surprised by the attention, he doesn’t mind. He’s looking forward to making some more college visits to help him make his decision. But he doesn’t want to rush it, saying all his options are open.
“Going into this game, I was hoping to do well get some more colleges to call me. The game was on TV. Forty-eight million were people watching. I tried to do the best of my ability,” Holtsclaw said. “I was thinking about all the people watching and hopefully it would spark up an opportunity for me.”
John Groth can be reached at (270) 505-1754 or firstname.lastname@example.org.