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Barkley gains top honor

FOOTBALL: Newport Beach resident is named Gatorade National Male Athlete of Year, then featured at the ESPYs.

July 16, 2008

LOS ANGELES — The awards keep coming for Matt Barkley, the Newport Beach resident and star quarterback who will be a senior at Mater Dei High in the fall.

Barkley was named Gatorade National High School Male Athlete of the Year, at a luncheon emceed by ESPN’s Stuart Scott and attended by Matt Leinart of the Arizona Cardinals, Greg Oden of the Portland Trailblazers, Candace Parker of the Los Angeles Sparks, track star Allyson Felix and soccer legend Mia Hamm.

Barkley, a former Newport Mesa Junior All-American standout, became the first junior to receive the honor. He was also the first non-senior to win the Gatorade National Football Player of the Year after his junior season, which was stellar for the Monarchs.

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The 6-foot-3, 220-pound quarterback, who has verbally committed to sign a national of letter of intent to play at USC, threw for 3,576 yards and 35 touchdowns, completing 63% of his passes (214 of 340) against just nine interceptions.

The first junior captain in Mater Dei history, Barkley averaged 325 yards and 3.2 touchdown passes per game in leading the Monarchs (9-2) to the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Pac-5 Division playoffs

Barkley has maintained a 3.77 GPA in the classroom. He also donates his time, leading the team’s Monarchs for Marines initiative, lending support to the Marines and Sailors of Camp Pendleton. As part of the effort, Barkley has helped raise more than $100,000 for a charity benefiting the families of wounded and fallen Marines.

Chanelle Price, a track and field runner at Easton Area High in Easton, Penn. was named the Gatorade National Female Athlete of the Year.

After Barkley was honored, he made like a pro and walked the red carpet for the ESPYs, the annual awards show put on by ESPN. The show will air on ESPN Sunday at 6 p.m.

— From staff reports


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