Athlete of the Issue: James King

Brian Friel

During his freshman year, James King signed up to play his first year of organized football. Little did he know that three years later, he would be the face of Miramonte football.

“I would always play pickup games and watch it on TV, but before high school I never played organized football,” said King.

King has started at both wide receiver and defensive back for the Mats since his sophomore year.  He exploded onto the scene in 2007 by earning 2nd team All DFAL honors at defensive back.

Since then, King has been one of the most dominant players in the area. As a junior, he amassed over 1,100 yards and 12 touchdowns on his way to garnering 1st team All DFAL honors at both wide receiver and defensive back. He was also named team MVP and served as a captain, feats rarely accomplished by a junior.

This year has proved no different as King continues to be a force on both offense and defense. Despite the Mats’ new veer offense, which is primarily used for running, he is currently among the top three league leaders in all major receiving statistics. As a result of the new offense, King has also begun to see more time at running back.

“I don’t mind running the ball at all,” said King. “I’ll do whatever it takes to win.”

Defensively, King primarily plays as an outside linebacker, but has also seen time at both defensive end and safety. He averages five tackles per game and has three interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown.

However, King’s success was not granted to him instantaneously. To reach the point where he is now, King had to dedicate countless hours to improve all aspects of his game. Last spring, he ran track for Miramonte while keeping a rigorous weightlifting regimen.

“For off-season training last year I would lift with the football team and then go to track practice. The track workouts were new to me so I was really out of shape in the beginning, but it got easier as we went. Then on the weekends I’d go to Raw and workout with Raymond Gervasi and try to out-lift him, which is almost impossible,” said King.

While running track, King competed in the 100, 200, and the long jump, and was a member of the 4×100 relay team as well.

“I started track because I knew I needed to get faster and learn how to open up my stride,” said King. “I really liked it, it helped a lot and was challenging and fun.”

King’s hard work has paid off as he already holds offers from Navy, Army, UNLV, and Sacramento State.

“As far as college goes, I’m still undecided for where I want to go. There are so many incredible football players out there, so I just hope I can find a place to fit in,” said King.
Although the Mats are currently 3-5, King believes that things are on the rise.

“We can still get a good seed in the playoffs and if we play every team the way we played Campo I definitely think we can do it,” he said.