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Former Marietta High School Blue Devil Football Players (Marietta, GA)

Updated on June 21, 2015

Whatever happened to...

Tracking ex-Marietta High School Blue Devil football players into college or the pros. If you have suggestions for players to add to the list or if you have questions about the status of a former player, please leave a comment in the comments section at the bottom of the page.

SEE ALSO:Former MHS Basketball Players.

HEADLINE: Najja Johnson returns to Georgia to take on the Bulldogs in 2012 season opener

Najja Johnson (cornerback: University of Buffalo)
Najja Johnson (cornerback: University of Buffalo)

Shutdown City

MHS Has a Tradition of Stellar Cornerbacks

Former Marietta High School Blue Devil Cornerbacks

  • Traye Simmons (C/O 2005): Minnesota/NFL
  • Thad Turner (C/O 2005): Ohio/NFL
  • Mark Mathis: Liberty University/NFL/Canadian Football League
  • Chris Hobbs: Stanford/Memphis
  • Najja Johnson (pictured): University of Buffalo/NFL

Greg Franklin, UAB

Blue Devils: Recent College Players

** CLASS OF 2015** RB Kirvonte Benson: Georgia Tech

** CLASS OF 2015** K Ian Shannon: Auburn

LB Tyrell Tomlin: University of North Carolina; (MHS Class of 2014). As a freshmen, appeared in nine games for the Tar Heels.

QB Anthony Jennings: LSU; (MHS Class of 2013)

WR Tyree Harris: Wake Forest; (MHS Class of 2013)

DE Trey Warren: Tennessee-Martin; (MHS Class of 2013)

DL Jan Robles: Centre College; (MHS Class of 2013)

RB Greg Franklin (MHS Class of 2010). Franklin (pictured) was the leading rusher for University of Alabama-Birmingham as a sophomore.
2012 stats
RUSHING: 36 carries for 209 yards and 2 TDs
KICK RETURN: 9 kickoff return for 201 yards.
RECEPTIONS: 12 receptions for 190 yards and two touchdown catches.

2011 season stats:
RUSHING: 12 games 84 carries 435 yards 2 touchdowns
RECEIVING: 21 catches for 284 yards.

Senior cornerback Najja Johnson-BUFFALO BULLS (MHS Class of 2008): Johnson started the first game of the 2013 season against Ohio State. He had two tackles.In 2012 Johnson led the Bulls in interceptions (5) and tallied 43 tackles.Johnson had 39 tackles in 2011, and also led the Mid-American Conference with 15 pass breakups.
HIGHLIGHTS:OCT 1, 2011 Vs. University of Tennessee: 7 tackles and 3 pass break-ups.

Freshman receiver Dorion McMickens played on both sides of the ball for University of West Georgia in 2011, tallying 3 catches for 39 yards. He also saw playing time on special teams, where he had 4 tackles.

DB Ro'Mello Porter: class of 2012. Currently plays defensive back for Faulkner University. Faulkner is the home of first-year defensive line coach and former Falcons draft pick Aundray Bruce.

LB Rontrez Barclay: class of 2012; signed with Georgia Military College.

DL Rommie Fairchild, Jr - Brevard

DL Josh Hodge, Jr - Carson- Newman

WR Charles Francois, Fr - Chattahoochee Tech

FB Devin Davis, So - Chattahoochee Tech

DE Zach Shelton, Jr - Gardner- Webb

WR Caleb Cox, Sr - Kentucky Christian

DL Tyler Johnson, Jr - Lagrange

DB Collis Clark, Fr - Lenoir- Rhyne

CB Michael Welden, So - Randolph- Macon

JOSH COOPER (UFL) - LAS VEGAS LOCOS
JOSH COOPER (UFL) - LAS VEGAS LOCOS

Blue Devils: Recent Pro Players

DB Najja Johnson, University of Buffalo. Read more about Johnson's pro day.
Johnson signed as an undrafted free agent with the Pittsburgh Steelers (2014).

Former Marietta High Blue Devil Josh Cooper (pictured) played three seasons as a part of the UFL. Cooper, who played defensive line at Ole Miss, is also an NFL vet and spent time with the 49ers and the Saints. Josh played for the UFL's Florida Tuskers in 2009 and then the Las Vegas Locos in 2010 and 2011.Josh (pictured, as a member of the Saints) played basketball and football while at Marietta.

Traye Simmons (MHS c/o 2005)2011 - his second season in the NFL with the Chargers. The former Marietta Blue Devil signed with the San Diego practice squad in 2010 after initially being cut by the team after training camp. Simmons, a cornerback, was un-drafted out of college where he was a Minnesota Gopher by way of College of the Sequoias Junior College. In two years at Minnesota, Simmons tallied 94 tackles and 6 interceptions, scoring on one INT. Traye was named Honorable Mention All-Big Ten for the 2009 college football season as voted on by the Big Ten coaches. MHS Career:Recorded 5 INT's during his senior season, helping MHS bring home a Region Title. Also, Simmons was named Cobb County TD Club DB of Year in 2005.

Greg Jackson. In November of 2012, Greg signed with the Colorado Ice of the Indoor Football League. In 2012, Jackson played for the Green Bay Blizzard, also a team in the IFL. Jackson was named Defensive Player of the Week for the third week of the 2012 season.Greg was a finalist for the IFL's Rookie of the Year award in 2011 and ended the regular season with 7 sacks and 113 tackles. Jackson played his college football at Memphis.

Thad Turner (MHS c/o 2005) , the former cornerback for the Ohio University Bobcats, was signed as an un-drafted free agent by the Indianapolis Colts in 2010. He ended the season with the Patriots, then entered camp with them in 2011 before being cut.
MHS Career: Named All-State, led the Devils to an 11-1 record and a region title

Jon Morrison
Jon Morrison

Where are they now?

Neil Barfield - former Blue Devil quarterback and a 64-year season ticket holder. He is the chairman of the Marietta Schools Foundation.

Ghervon Blue - 2012 update: a member of the Georgia Canes of the DSFL.

Otis Brumby III, class of 1999. He quarterbacked the Blue Devils for two seasons. He is now general manager of the Marietta Daily Journal and Neighbor Newspapers.

Tommy Carthers. Carthers was an outstanding wrestler as a Blue Devil. Now a football and wrestling coach at Marietta High, Coach Carthers teaches Graphic Communications.Tommy attended degree at Iowa State University where he was a member of the wrestling team.

Dave Dorsey: Class of 1989, now the athletic director at North Cobb Christian.

Terrence Huey: Graduated from Clemson University. Lettered in football in 2001 (running back).

Jason King, former OL 1994-1998. Now in his 6th season as a member of the MHS Blue Devil coaching staff. COLLEGE: Valdosta State. 3 year starter. 2001 - All-Gulf South Conference First Team and four different All-American Teams. He was a First Team selection on the Daktronics, Inc., Don Hansen Weekly Football Gazette, D2Football.com, and AP Little All-American teams, respectively. Finally, he was a named to the East Squad for the 2001 Cactus Bowl, the Division II All-Star Game in Kingsville, Texas, in which he led the East Squad to victory.

Bob Lewis, class of 1967. Now a General Manager for the Marietta Board of Lights and Water.

Darian Mooreman - Played corner-back at Samford University with future NFLer Cortland Finnegan.

Jon Morrison - The tight end signed with Georgia Tech in 2004 and redshirted his first season. He was injured in 2005 (shoulder) after moving to defensive end in spring 2005.

MHS Career:
Honorable mention all-state selection by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution; two-time all-county choice.
Twice selected Defensive Player of the Week by the Cobb County Touchdown Club.
Had 85 tackles, 13 tackles for loss, three sacks and two fumble recoveries
**2012 UPDATE: Morrison is on the roster for the 2012 Georgia Panthers of the USFL.

Chris Poston, Eric Zeier's center in 1990 is now a developer with Traton Homes in Marietta.

Pete Waldrep, starting Blue Devil center in 1967, Marietta's only state championship season. He is now director of development for the Marietta Housing Authority.

Josh Weaver - former track and field athlete as well as a member of the football team at MHS, Weaver attended University of Memphis. He is a first-year coach (2010) for the Blue Devils.

Marietta Athletic Hall Of Fame

Athletic Hall of Fame (Home)

2010 Hall of Fame Inductees

Dr. Alfred O. Colquitt

Dr. Steve Gibbons (posthumously)

Dr. John Knox

MHS Coach Roscoe Googe (1979 - 2009)

Athletes: Mackey Nolen (MHS Class of 1952); Joseph Kozloski (MHS Class of 1959), Andy McCollum (MHS Class of 1977), Labrone Mitchell (MHS Class of 1997), Ezra Williams (MHS Class of 1999), and the 1950 Boys State Championship Track Team.

Old Marietta Facebook Group

Check out this Facebook group for some great old photos of homes and people in Marietta over the past 100 years (or more).

LINK TO FACEBOOK GROUP "OLD MARIETTA".

The photo below is from the Facebook group, it's an old MHS football squad (year unknown).

Northcutt Stadium - 1976

A look at Greg Franklin's freshman year at UAB

GREG FRANKLIN (MHS c/o 2010). Running Back; University of Alabama-Birmingham

6' 180 lbs.

After receiving offers from Troy, Ohio and North Carolina State Franklin signed with UAB, where he could play running-back, instead of cornerback (which is how he was projected at other schools).

He got into the mix as a freshman, getting some valuable snaps under his belt...

2010 SEASON:

11 carries for 53 yards, 5 catches for 48 yards

UAB vs UCF (Oct 06, 2010 at Orlando, Fla.)

FRANKLIN: 3 carries for 10 yards and 1 catch for 5 yards.

UAB vs. University of Tennessee (Sept. 25, 2010)

FRANKLIN: 1 carry for 7 yards and 3 catches for 37 yards.

UAB vs SMU (Sep 11, 2010 at Dallas, Texas)

FRANKLIN: 1 Special Teams tackle

From Northcutt to the NFL: Marietta High has sent 8 players into The League.

Burton takes the reins at Marietta

March 3, 2010

Scott Burton, the man charged with replacing Coach Friday, left the University of Richmond after two years for the top job at MHS. Read about it in the Daily Journal. Burton is a graduate of the University of Richmond and got his Masters in Education from UGA.

James "Friday" Richards

Class of 1972

From the Atlanta Journal & Constitution:
Coach Friday retires

Eric Zeier to be inducted to the UGA Circle of Honor

Class of 1991

The former Blue Devil and record-setting Georgia quarterback is a part of the UGA Circle of Honor.

Eric was the top signal-caller in the country as a senior at Marietta. He went on to set records as one of the most prolific passers in University of Georgia. In the NFL, Eric played for the Cleveland, Baltimore and Tampa Bay.

* - Eric graduated early to join the Bulldogs in Athens a semester early.

Did you know?

Marietta High School has put 86 players on the All-State team and 49 of them were 1st Team All-State.

Rex Robinson

Class of 1977

College career: University of Georgia


Rex's Blog: Roughing the Kicker

Robinson was named 1st team All-SEC in 1978, 1979 & 1980 and Playboy All-American in 1979 & 1980. Was also named to the Walter Camp, Football News, Football Writer’s, and UPI All-American teams in 1980.

Finished with SEC records for single season FG% at 88.2%, career points (269), career field goals (56) and consecutive extra points (101).

Scott Sisson kick vs. UVA

Scott Sisson: Marietta High School class of 1989

College

Georgia Tech

All-American Team (1992)

Pro

New England Patriots (1993)

Minnesota Vikings (1996)

Traye Simmons

1947 - MHS vs. Cartersville on Thanksgiving Day

Richard Shelton

CB (Liberty University/Pittsburgh Steelers/Denver Broncos)

Richard Shelton is a former MHS football player who became an All-American cornerback at Liberty University. Shelton played 5 years in the NFL and is now entering his 8th year with the Tennessee Titans as a scout. BIO.

From user Crimedog202:

"Richard Shelton, class of 1984, DB for Liberty University (Bachelors of Science in Pschology 1988), drafted by the Denver Broncos 1989, finished his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers (retiring due to knee injury 1993), 3 interceptions wk 17 of the '91 season against the Browns that earned him NFL Player of the Week, also served as Special Teams captain during the Steelers' '93 season. Currently with the Tennessee Titan organization scouting college talent throughout the Northeast region of the USA."

Jason Venson

Class of 2004

High School Career

Rated as the No. 39 prospect in the state of Georgia by Rivals.com, also named one of the top 50 players in the state of Georgia by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.


College Career

Finished his UCF career ranking sixth in school history with 322 career tackles...Received an All-Conference USA honorable mention...Started all 12 games, bringing his career total to 42...Led UCF with both 82 tackles on the year and 60 solo stops...Also chipped in 3.5 TFLs, one sack, two interceptions, two fumble recoveries and eight pass breakups...Shared UCF's Most Outstanding Defensive Back award after the season with Sha'reff Rashad.


Pro Career

In April 2009 Jason was signed by the Cleveland Browns as an un-drafted free agent. The team waived him before the season started.

Derrick Tinsley

Class of 2000

High School

Ranked the nation's No. 9 tailback prospect by SuperPrep. Max Emfinger ranked him among the top 125 players in the country and the Dallas Morning News listed him among the top 100 recruits. Tabbed first-team 5A all-state and Marvelous Metro 11 by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Ran for more than 1,300 yards and 15 touchdowns as a senior for an 8-3 Marietta team that advanced to the 5A playoffs.

College

University of Tennessee (WR)

Pro

Atlanta Falcons (training camp)

2002 - Played in all 13 games as a reserve tailback/slotback. Carried 45 times for 202 yards (4.5 yards per carry) with a long run of 25 yards vs. Kentucky. Also caught 20 passes for 256 yards and a team-high five touchdowns. Led the Vols in both rushing (48 yards on eight carries) and receiving (72 yards on four catches) in Game 12 vs. Kentucky.

2001 - Carried 10 times for 59 yards, with a 16-yard touchdown run vs. Memphis. Also returned six kickoffs for a 17.0 average.

Signed Derrick Tinsley photo

Mark Mathis

Class of 1983

CB at Liberty University

Played in the NFL for the St. Louis Rams

NFL

1987 - 1 INT/1 start/2 games played (STL)

CFL

1988-1993

Two-time Western Conference All Stars

Where is he now? Mathis is director of college relations for ELITE Football Combines.

Greg Jackson

Class of 2005

High School Career

Owns the MHS school record with 15 sacks in 2004.Team MVP (2005).Cobb County's 48 Minute Player of the Year. Marietta Daily Journal 1st Team All-Cobb County.
TRACK: Cobb County's triple jump champion.

College Career

Linebacker for University of Memphis, 4-year player.

Pro Career

Linebacker for the Colorado Ice and Green Bay Blizzard of the Indoor Football League. Defensive Player of the Week; finalist for Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Hap Hines

Class of 1996

Hap in the record books at University of Georgia

4th: FG % in a career

70.00% - Hap Hines, 1996-99

2nd in FGs in a game

4 - Hap Hines vs. Ole Miss, 1999

PAT's (season)

100% - Hap Hines, 1999 (36 of 36)

PAT's Made - Career

* 148 - Billy Bennett, 2000-03

* 125 - Allan Leavitt, 1973-76

* 122 - Kevin Butler, 1981-84

* 117 - Hap Hines, 1996-1999

* 114 - Brandon Coutu, 2004-07

* 101 - Rex Robinson, 1977-80

Courtney Freeman

Class of 1994

Freeman held the Liberty University record for receiving yards in a game (186 versus Western Kentucky on Oct. 19, 1996) until it was broken in 2009.

Courtney also holds the Liberty record for longest TD play (98 yard catch versus Charleston Southern in 1996), most TD's in a game (3 in 1997), and yards per reception (24.9 in 1997).

Jack Hunter

Class of 1933 (Captain)

From Edwin's very thorough and well-written Chicken Fat blog.


FRANK JACK HUNTER was born 21 Oct 1914 in Marietta, Cobb, Georgia, and died 03 Aug 1990 in , Cobb, Georgia.


Jack was born on Clay Street in Marietta. The Marietta Loop, or Parkway paves over where the house was that Jack was born.

He graduated from Marietta High School in 1934 where he was a captain of the football team.

Jack first joined the National Guards with along with his brothers, but later joined the Navy that was his first career. He was at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. In the Pacific during World War II he was stationed on a P-T boat. On the P-T boat he is recognized for saving Eddie Rickenbacker's life.

"On a World War II inspection trip for Secretary of War Henry Stimson in 1942, Rickenbacker and seven others were forced down in the Pacific about 600 miles north of Samoa. They were rescued after drifting 24 days on rubber rafts."

Travis Zachery

Clemson

College Career: Clemson University

2000 - First-team All-ACC running back according to ACC Sportswriters Association and The Sporting News in 2000... Doak Walker Award mid-season nominee for 2000... led the conference in scoring with 9.3 points per game.

** Holds Clemson's school record for receptions by a running-back for a career (105) and for a season (45).

Travis' College Stats

High School

Rated as an All-American and the 15th-best running back in the Southeast Region by PrepStar...ranked as 40th best player in Southeast by Tom Lemming...ranked as 17th best tailback in the nation by The Recruiting Advisor...two-time All-State selection...played in the 1997 Georgia-Florida High School All-Star game...member of Atlanta Journal/Constitution Super Southern 100...listed as one of the top 57 incoming freshmen running backs in the nation by Athlon...listed as one of the top 50 incoming players in the ACC by Athlon...had 7,528 all-purpose yards for his career, 5,267 rushing, 740 receiving, 335 in kickoff returns, 73 in interceptions returns and 113 yards passing...had 1,939 yards rushing and 22 touchdowns asa senior, he rushed for 56 scores in his career...had a total of 66 touchdowns in his career, 56 rushing, four receiving and six on returns...was 2-3 for 95 yards passing as a senior...averaged 8.4 yards every time he touched the ball for Marietta High...All-American according to Southeastern Recruiting Alliance...had six kick returns for touchdowns in his high school career also an outstanding basketball player at Marietta.

Jim Cagle

Class of 1970

All-State and future NFL player Jim Cagle, at 6' 5" tall and weighed 210 pounds, was the biggest player on the Marietta High state championship team in 1967.

Position: Defensive tackle

College: University of Georgia (c/o 1974)

NFL:

In 1974, Cagle was a 5th round draft choice (108th overall) of the Philadelphia Eagles. In 1976 Cagle spent the off-season with the Tampa Bay Bucs, alongside quarterback Steve Spurrier. He was cut late in the pre-season after the team signed Jack Novak.

Chris Hobbs

Cornerback (Stanford/Memphis)

FROM ESPN.COM:

U of M gets Stanford transfer

College:

Stanford: 2006-2007 (Cornerback and Punt Returner)

Memphis: 2009-2010

Info:

- Chris Hobbs Sr. was a running back at the University of Miami from 1978-81.

- At Marietta, Hobbs played both WR and CB, making first team All-County his junior and senior year.

- Joined former MHS Blue Devils Greg Jackson and Joshua Weaver at Memphis after graduating from Stanford.

PROFILE:

Started at both wide receiver and cornerback for his final two seasons at Marietta High School in Georgia ... Two-time First-Team All-County receiver as a junior and senior ... Honorable mention All-State in 2004 after catching 48 balls for over 850 yards and 10 touchdowns ... As a corner, he accounted for 60 tackles, 15 pass deflections and two interceptions as a senior ... Led his team to an 11-1 record and a No. 6 ranking in the state of Georgia in 2004 ... As a junior, he had 35 receptions for 700 yards and seven TDs to go along with 40 tackles, five pass deflections, three interceptions and one punt return for a touchdown ... Competed in track in high school in the 100m, 200m, 400m, relays and long jump ... Three-time state qualifier in the 4x100 and 4x400 ... Four-year letterwinner in both football and track ... Named his high school's Male Scholar Athlete of the Year for 2004-05 ... Member of Y.O.U.T.H (Young Organizers United to Help).

Jeremy Hill

Class of 2008

Ball State Bio

WIDE RECEIVER, BALL STATE

2009 (So.): Played in nine games with four starts . . . caught his first career touchdown pass vs. Ohio on a career long 35-yard catch . . . tallied a career high three receptions in three games -- vs. North Texas, at Army and at Auburn . . . career high 38 receiving yards at Army.

2008 (Fr.): Played in 11 games, including the Mid-American Conference Championship Game and the GMAC Bowl . . . played primarily on special teams.

HIGH SCHOOL: Lettered twice in football and track. . . . all-conference as a senior . . . Marietta's Most Valuable Player as a senior . . . received honorable mention on the all-state team as a senior . . . tallied 28 catches for 731 yards with eight touchdowns as a senior . . . also registered eight interceptions and 39 tackles in senior season . . . managed 69 catches for 1,502 yards and 14 touchdowns in career . . . had 60 total tackles in career . . . Track: Competed in the hurdles . . . owns personal bests of 14.3 in the 100 high hurdles and 47.9 in the intermediate hurdles.

COLLEGE

HILL, Jeremy (2008-2009) BALL STATE

15 games, 11 catches 138 yards 1 TD

Labrone Mitchell

1997

High School

Player QB in high school, along with being on the basketball and track team.

College

UGA (WR)

FROM 2000 SEC Press Release:

"LaBRONE MITCHELL, GEORGIA

Georgia junior flanker LaBrone Mitchell has been extensively involved in community service projects including reading enhancement programs in the Athens/Clarke County school system, local Leisure Services summer programs and both the Special Olympic and Youth Summer Olympic Games. The Marietta, Ga. native is a junior majoring in Sports Studies and has been a starter this year at wide receiver after serving double duty the past two years as a backup quarterback and part-time wide receiver."

Pro

Mitchell played for the Detroit Lions in their 2002 training camp before returning to Marietta, where he is now an assistant coach for the Blue Devils.

MHS 2006 Highlights

Tim Montz

Ole Miss Kicker

Marietta High School: Football/soccer (class of 1993)

Ole Miss: Football 1993-1996

2013: Currently Montz is 7th in scoring, all-time at Ole Miss. In 1994, 1995 and 1996 Montz was Ole Miss' leading scorer.

MHS Family

The McCollum Family

Drew McCollum (c/o 2013) - Berry CollegeAndy McCollum (c/o1977) - Austin PeayJohn McCollum Jr. (1949-1952)John McCollum Sr. (1923-1925) - Young Harris

Article on the McCollum family tradition.2013 Update on the McCollum family (Drew signed to play at Berry College in February 2013)ANDY McCOLLUMCURRENTLY: Defensive Line Coach/Recruiting Coordinator (Georgia Tech)A stellar coaching career has taken McCollum from Baylor to NC State, including a head coaching stint at Middle Tennessee State.Andy played quarterback at MHS.

MHS Family

The Simpson Family

Howard Simpson (1960)Jess Simpson (1988)Rob Simpson (1996)

HOWARD SIMPSON: Class of 1960

College career: Auburn

Pro Career: Minnesota Vikings (1964)

JESS SIMPSON: Class of 1988

College career: Auburn

Simpson was a member of the 1989 SEC Championship team.

Currently: Head Football Coach at Buford High School.

Joey Ducree

Savannah State - CB

ESPN BIO

Ducree Video

Give us an update... - Fill in all the names I forgot.

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    • profile image

      Anonymous 15 months ago

      What about Amel Jackson 90-93?

    • profile image

      annonymous 21 months ago

      What about Hicks Poor and his stats at Auburn?

    • profile image

      crimedog202 3 years ago

      Richard Shelton, class of 1984, DB for Liberty University (Bachelors of Science in Pschology 1988), drafted by the Denver Broncos 1989, finished his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers (retiring due to knee injury 1993), 3 interceptions wk 17 of the '91 season against the Browns that earned him NFL Player of the Week, also served as Special Teams captain during the Steelers' '93 season. Currently with the Tennessee Titan organization scouting college talent throughout the Northeast region of the USA.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Jan Robles, class of 2013 is playing DE for Centre College in Kentucky