Some accomplishments by defensive back Derek Stingley Jr. sound like myths rather than reality.
The Dunham School standout never gave up a touchdown pass in his high school career, which included a season as an eighth-grader when he weighed just 125 pounds.
No passes were completed on Stingley during his senior season. He gave up only one reception and made 11 interceptions as a junior.
Though Stingley signed last month and is now enrolled at LSU, the awards keep coming. Add the Louisiana Farm Bureau Insurance/Louisiana Sports Writers Association Mr. Football award to the long list.
“Wow … that is big. This was one award I didn’t think I could win. There are great players in Louisiana and I know what they did and what they bring to the game,” Stingley said. “For me, it is always about doing whatever my team needs. An award like this means hard work paid off. It means a lot.”
Stingley also was selected as the Louisiana Gatorade Player of the Year and as a national Gatorade Player of the Year finalist. Other awards, including the LSWA’s Outstanding Defensive Player in Class 2A and The Advocate’s Class 3A and below All-Metro MVP for defense, also were a part of the résumé for the 6-foot-1, 190-pound Stingley. He is the first Dunham player to win the Mr. Football award.
Rated as the nation’s No. 1 cornerback prospect by two recruiting services and the nation’s top overall prospect for 2019 by one service, Stingley was an all-around asset for the Tigers.
Stingley was rarely targeted as a defensive back and as a senior, finishing with 19 tackles, 11 assists, three pass breakups and two interceptions, one of which he returned for touchdown. He returned three punts for TDs, caught 23 passes for 667 yards and eight TDs and also rushed for 201 yards and two TDs. Stingley finished his career with 27 interceptions, 17 pass breakups and 14 punt returns for TDs.
“As a 13-year-old, eighth-grader, you could see Derek was a really good player,” Dunham coach Neil Weiner said. “But the way he has worked to get stronger and improve his skills, especially over the last couple of years, has made it possible for him to achieve so much.”
Weiner noted how coachable Stingley was and also pointed out that he routinely won the school’s Top Tiger award given to the team’s strongest player based on weight lifts in the offseason.
“As he has grown physically, Derek continued to get better and better,” Dunham offensive coordinator Randy Leindecker said. “He is a once-in-a-lifetime player for a coach.”
Louisiana Farm Bureau Insurance/LSWA Mr. Football
2018: Derek Stingley Jr., The Dunham School
2017: Anthony ‘Pooka' Williams, Hahnville
2016: Keytaon Thompson, Landry-Walker
2015: Lindsey Scott, Zachary
2014: Deshawn Capers-Smith, Warren Easton
2013: Leonard Fournette, St. Aug
2012: John Diarse, Neville
2011: Landon Collins, Dutchtown
2010: Anthony Johnson, O. Perry Walker
2009: Gavin Webster, Lutcher
2008: Blake Matherne, Belle Chasse
2007: Randall Mackey, Bastrop
2006: Joe McKnight, John Curtis
2005: Charles Scott, Jonesboro-Hodge
2004: Ryan Perrilloux, East St. John
2003: Chris Markey, Jesuit
2002: Robert Lane, Neville
2001: Jason Miller, Iota
2000: Byron Robertson, St. Thomas Aquinas
1999: Brock Berlin, Evangel
1998: Bradie James, West Monroe
1997: Adam McConathy, West Monroe
1996: Travis Minor, Catholic-BR
1995: Cecil Collins, Leesville