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franklin county times

Trojans QB Langston relies on speed

By By Will Bardwell / staff writer
October 12, 2004
With Maurice Langston's speed, mobility and acute awareness, it didn't take long for his coaches to start comparing the Northeast Lauderdale quarterback to another player who wears No. 7.
It's no accident, though, that the fleet-footed Langston has become the centerpiece of Northeast Lauderdale's offense. Since becoming the team's No. 1 quarterback midway through his freshman season in 2002, the 5-foot-10, 170-pound Langston has started 24 straight games and given the Trojans' opponents headaches all along the way.
That instinct for reading blocks and breaking open a play brought near-immediate success for Langston, who was a sophomore in 2003 when he helped lead the Trojans to their first playoff appearance in two decades.
Langston's dual threat as a runner and a passer has kept defenses guessing against the Trojans this season as well. Prior to Friday's game against Wayne County, Langston had completed 38-of-73 passes with three touchdowns, and he also had a team-high 654 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns on 140 carries.
Either through the air or on the ground, Langston has had a hand in all but five of the Trojans' touchdowns this season.
Another advantage is Langston's awareness for when to throw, when to scramble or when to tuck the ball and run. "The number one thing is that he's a smart football player," Nelson said. "He's smart not only on the field, but also in the classroom. That intelligence helps him. He's a natural, and he's done a great job."
Defenses account for Langston's intelligence and ability the only way they can putting linebackers and defensive backs on the field whose sole job is to keep the speedy quarterback from breaking a big play.
And that can help Langston become more than just a playmaker he can become a distraction for defenses and free up his teammates to make plays.
Langston said that unselfish attitude also leads him to sometimes remain quiet in practice, giving way to the Trojans' seniors to point out teammates' mistakes and shortcomings.

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