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Tampa Catholic's Kevin Knox decides to stick to one sport

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Tue. August 4, 2015 | Kelly Parsons and Bob Putnam

Tampa Catholic's Kevin Knox decides to stick to one sport

For as long as Kevin Knox can remember, he has divided his time between football and basketball.

But after a fast ascent in basketball, Knox has decided to give up playing on the gridiron. He made the decision after talking with the Crusaders football coaching staff following Tuesday’s practice.

 

"Kevin understands that basketball is where he needs to be," coach Mike Gregory said. "I wish him the best of luck. He's a terrific kid."

Knox becomes the third major player to leave Tampa Catholic’s football program in the past three months. Defensive end Malik Barrow and tight end Tre McKitty both transferred to IMG this summer. 

Knox, a junior, was returning as the Crusaders' starting quarterback this season and is ranked as a four-star prospect by 247Sports. In his first season starting for the Crusaders last year, Knox threw for 995 yards and seven touchdowns.

He has become an even bigger recruit in basketball, especially after becoming one of 12 players selected for USA Basketball's under-16 national team, which played for the FIBA Americas Championship in Argentina two months ago. Knox played a pivotal role, averaging 10.6 points and 4.6 rebounds in five games — all wins — to help the Americans win the title. They beat Canada 77-60 in the final.  

Knox's performance continued his rapid ascension this offseason. Unranked in June, Knox is now listed as a four-star recruit by ESPN and debuted at No. 45 on its list of the top 60 players in the country in the 2017 class. The 6-foot-7 forward is also getting plenty of attention from colleges.

He has 10 offers from schools, including Florida, FSU, LSU, Miami, Memphis and Xavier. 

Now tasked with replacing yet another starter, Gregory said the Crusaders have benefited from the transfer of quarterback Austin Sessums. Sessums played for Wesley Chapel last year, throwing for 933 yards and 11 touchdowns. In the offseason he transferred to Wiregrass Ranch before transferring yet again in July to Tampa Catholic.

Sessums, a 6-foot, 170-pound junior, was a finalist in John Kaleo's Quarterback Challenge in April, and with athletes like five-star wide receiver Nate Craig-Myers surrounding him, Sessums could be a promising solution for the Crusaders. 

It'll be an adjustment, Gregory knows. But he's confident the Crusaders won't skip a beat.

"Everything I've seen of Austin since he's been here, he's been a dedicated worker in the weight room. The guys have gravitated towards him," Gregory said. "He's a guy who can definitely make the engine go, it's just a matter of him picking up the offense the guys building trust in him."

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