AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Seven Austintown Fitch football players are heading to the college ranks. All seven seniors were front and center Wednesday afternoon as they took part in a celebratory signing day at the school.
“It just says a lot about their commitment and their love for football and the kind of program we’re trying to build here in Austintown,” Fitch head coach TJ Parker said.
Wide receiver Tyler Evans is headed to the Big 12 next year. He will be playing at West Virginia. The two-time all-conference selection holds five school records and has the most career receiving yards and receptions in school history.
“The level of competition is really high,” Evans said. “So, I want to go there, push myself and really prove to myself what I can do.”
Quarterback Devin Sherwood will be continuing his academic and athletic career at the University of Virginia. The two-time Conference player of the year is the Falcon’s all-time leader in passing yards and touchdowns and holds 13 school records.
“When I got to Virginia, the head coach sat me down and I was in his office for like 30 minutes and he just talked to me,” Sherwood said. “You know, that showed right there. I felt wanted there and that’s what made me ultimately pick Virginia over the other schools that I had.”
Linebacker Devin Pounds will suit up for Washington and Jefferson College. He racked up 51 tackles over the last two seasons.
Tyree Mitchell is off to Baldwin Wallace. The linebacker/running back is a three-year starter and an all-conference selection. Since his junior year, Mitchell has recorded 29 tackles and 674 rushing yards.
“It just felt like home to me,” Mitchell said. “The coaches and all welcomed me in and even the players.”
Linebacker AJ Byrd will play at Edinboro. He was first-team all-conference and all-county as a junior.
First-team all-conference offensive lineman Colin Moore is headed to Robert Morris next season.
Defensive lineman/linebacker Donovan Oliver is staying close to home and will play at Mount Union. He recorded 54 tackles and 9.5 tackles for loss over the last two seasons.
“I just really like feel like they can help me grow and develop as a player and I just feel like that’s what I need to continue to keep growing,” Oliver said.
The players not only celebrated with family and friends, but they reflected on the last four years at Fitch.
“I wish I could go back and play again with my brothers, but it was great,” Evans said.” Wouldn’t change any of it for the world.”
“My time here, I’m not going to trade it for anything,” Sherwood added. “I had some awesome memories on the field, so I’m thankful for it all.”