Player Of The Year: Trevor Hodge

There was another bumper crop of potential collegiate football players in the Inland Area this season, but not one that meant as much — or had as much undeniable charisma — as Perris Citrus Hill senior Trevor Hodge.

Hodge led the Hawks to an unbeaten season and is FOMB’s 2012 Inland Area Prep Football Player Of The Year.

TREVOR HODGE

TREVOR HODGE

Citrus Hill’s d0-everything quarterback compiled some astounding numbers in a three-year varsity career that culminated with a CIF-Southern Section Eastern Division title on Friday, Nov. 30, 2012.

“I came a long way,” said Hodge. “Playing as a sophomore, as a kid, knowing the job in front of me — I had to grow up fast. I had to make decisions quick. It made me the man I am today, and who I am.”

The 6-foot-3, 195-pound scrambler emassed 8,500 all-purpose yards and 80 touchdowns in three seasons.

“Trevor has a lot of confident that he can play, and the position of quarterback is one where leadership is kind of thrust upon you,” head coach Eric Zomalt said. “He took it a ran with it. He was tenth-grader and leading the team to the playoffs.”

Hodge was the play-making catalyst to compliment the Hawks’ stout rushing attack as runners Davien Payne and P.J. Walker demanded their fair share of the spotlight.

“Always working. Stay working hard. Friday night — let’s get it,” he said.

Hodge says he never cared about receiving credit, and that all his efforts were in striving for a CIF championship.

“We just play off our enthusiasm and let other teams know that we’re coming for something. It’s like, ‘Go ahead. We just gonna keep beating people.'” he said.

Hodge emassed more than 8,000 total yards in three varsity seasons. / Photo by The Press-Enterprise

Hodge emassed 80 touchdowns and more 8,500 total yards in three varsity seasons. / Photo by David Rubene Photography

Hodge took some lumps as a sophomore in 2010, passing for 1,251 yards, seven TDs and seven INTs. He completed 10 or fewer pass attempts in each of his last eight games, and had the only negative-rushing performance of his career (minus-7) vs. Hemet West Valley in Week 9.

“He gets angry when he makes mistakes and I think that’s what you should be as a quarterback,” teammate and friend K.J. Young said.

As a junior and returning starter in 2011, Hodge turned it up a notch, passing for 2,114 yards and 16 touchdowns vs. just four INTs. He topped it off with a 16-of-29, 239-yard and two TD performance vs. Menifee Heritage in an Eastern Division semifinal in which he rushed for 138 yards in a loss.

“He still felt like he didn’t play his best game in the semifinals, and it made him even hungrier,” Zomalt said.

His 2012 season began with such promise even he was a little to excited about his prospects and was ejected in the Hawks’ first game for his involvement in an on-field scuffle. The fight earned him a one-game suspension.

Despite the early turmoil, Hodge put together his best statistical season in all key passing categories, including yards (2,934), touchdowns (31), completion percentage (66 percent), completions (171) and attempts (259). He also averaged more than 10 yards per rush in gaining 1,322 yards and scoring seven TDs this season.

“We said it last year that we was gonna get a ring,” he said.

Putting the cherry on top of a sweet career, Hodge passed for three-or-more TDs in his last five games, including a victory over Phelan Serrano in the Eastern Division title game in which he also gained 134 rushing yards.

“He was able to withstand what was expected, and the kind of coaching that was hard. He was a sophomore and we threw him into the fire,” Zomalt said. “Not every kid is built for that.”

Hodge will sign his National Letter of Intent to attend Iowa State University on Wednesday, Feb. 6, though he’s been committed to the Cyclones since before his senior season at Citrus Hill.

“My decision was easy because they came at me with a sense of comfort,” Hodge said about choosing to attend Iowa State. “They let me know that this is what you could do, you could run this offense and I like th offense that they run… everything they do there. That’s where the sense of comfort comes from.”

If the Pistol offense can remain prominent in the pro game, there will be a lot of coaches who will be very comfortable letting the multi-dimensional Hodge take the grip.

Teammates K.J. Young (left) and Trevor Hodge share a laugh during the CIF-Southern Section Eastern Division championship game victory over Phelan Serrano on Nov. 30, 2012.

Teammates K.J. Young (left) and Trevor Hodge share a laugh during the CIF-Southern Section Eastern Division championship game victory over Phelan Serrano on Nov. 30, 2012 / Photo by The Press-Enterprise.

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