The new wave is here. Like Moses parting the Red Sea, the time has come to make room for the new generation of football players. The football universe has become diverse, and the 2011 Eastbay Football University Youth All-American Bowl game showcases the newest, most exciting, and the most promising football talent in the country.
Much like the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has become the “can’t miss” game for football fans across the country looking for a preview of the nation’s top prep football talent, the Youth All-American Bowl was launched to highlight the next generation of prep stars.
Pitting the nation’s top 8th graders against one another in an all-star format, the bowl brings together the top youth talent in the nation.
Like Frank Sinatra sang about New York City,” If you can make it there, you’ll make it anywhere.”
This year, the bowl returns to the Alamodome in San Antonio on Jan. 9, and will be webcast live. The bowl gives these young athletes a national platform to see how they stack up against one another.
Dallas Frazier, 14, is a native of Pittsburgh and now resides in Anderson, SC. He is currently rated as one of the top 8th-grade football players in the state and he will be the starting strong safety.
And isn’t that appropriate for someone who virtually grew up with a football in his hand?
Indeed, legend has it that when Dallas was only a few months old, his grandfather placed a football in his crib, thereby setting him on the gridiron path.
Former Penn Hills All-American and University of Michigan freshman Cullen Christian played in the US Army All-American game at the Alamodome last year.
“The experience down there was probably the greatest experience you can get,” said Christian. “The players down south are really fast, but the players from Pittsburgh are tougher, more physical. I learned how to watch bigger receivers and faster receivers. You just got to pay attention to who you’re playing against.”
Frazier’s family lineage is filled with football and stardom. His father, Scott “Scooter” Frazier, a baller in his own right, was a running back on Gateway’s 1986 state championship football team. His uncle James played on an undefeated state championship team and his Uncle Eric “Silk” Frazier played on a team that was ranked in the top ten nationally by USA Today. Then there is his cousin, actress Tamara Tunie, of Homestead, who is a star on Law and Order.
It maybe a while before you can purchase a pair of Air Dallas sneakers, but one thing Dallas Frazier has never lacked is confidence.
The 5’ 8”, 160-pound eighth-grader has used his fluid stride and uncanny balance to pick off 3 passes, returning one 96-yards for a touchdown. Even more impressive? He has never been flagged, despite his hitting with the aggression of a linebacker. Frazier plays like a combination of his two idols: big hitter Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers and ball hawk Ed Reed from the Baltimore Ravens.
Frazier will continue to do anything that is asked of him, as last season he switched from playing tailback to fullback and from strong safety to linebacker.
Dallas is truly a leader focused and determined to be the best he can be. With posters of Walter Payton and Marion Barber on the wall for motivation, the teenager trains his heart out even when the temperature drops below freezing and he’ll bundle up in a heavy coat, hat and gloves.
“I’m not surprise how well Dallas is playing on defense,” said Gateway’s head coach Terry Smith. “All the Fraziers were known for what they were able to do on offense, but I think that they were even better on defense. They were all head hunters.”
Dallas has been invited and accepted an invitation to attend Darrelle Revis (New York Jets) and Ty Law’s (Future NFL Hall of Famer) football camp this summer.
“I’m scheduled to attend several camps this summer. I love spending the summer in Pittsburgh. I like Kennywood Park and Sandcastle,” said Frazier. “Me and my brother Zion love hanging out with our cousins DaVonte’, Derrick and Josh.”
His long term goals are to earn a college division I scholarship. He has narrowed his list to seven schools including Pitt, Penn State, WVU, Texas, Georgia Tech, South Carolina and Clemson.
“We stole the Frazier boys from Penn Hills.” said former Gateway and Hall of Fame coach Pete Antimarino. “They had the heart of champions. I wish I knew what made them tick.”
The 80-plus-year-old coach isn’t the type to dabble in hyperbole—he knows better than to get caught up in a kid’s reputation—but he will say this: “If they gave out PhD’s for parenting then Mr. and Mrs. Frazier would be at the head of the line.”
“Mr. Frazier was the president of the parent football boosters and he ruled with an iron fist,” added Antimarino.
Dallas Frazier is aware of the football legacy his family has left at Gateway.
“All my uncles, aunts and cousins want me to come back to Pittsburgh to play high school football,” said Dallas. “My dad is a sports agent and I see his and my uncle’s championship rings and watches, and trophies.” In the case of Dallas, he does owe a small debt to his father, who passed on to him amazing genetics that boost his athletic ability into the stratosphere.
Almost as if it were meant to be.