Oak Ridge senior Tee Higgins, a standout in football and basketball, confirmed on Sunday that he won’t play basketball for the Wildcats this season in order to focus on football.
Higgins is a wide receiver who has committed to Clemson. He had posted on Twitter on Friday that it was his decision to not play basketball this year.
For the record everyone, it was my decision not to play basketball this year.👌🏾
— Tee Higgins (@teehiggins5) October 28, 2016
Higgins, who was listed as 6’5″ and 190 pounds earlier this football season, has been one of the most dynamic players for the Wildcats on the basketball court. He has had the ability to fire up crowds with powerful dunks. (One dunk at Gibbs in December got the attention of ESPN.) Higgins played as a freshman on the 2014 runner-up team in the state championship game, and since then, he’s been a key part of the team and a regular starter, with some memorable clutch free throws and three-point shots in big basketball games.
Higgins was regularly one of the top scorers for the Wildcats, and he was one of three Class AAA Mr. Basketball finalists earlier this year. (You can see the list of finalists and winners here.) He had picked up basketball scholarship offers from Tennessee, Louisville, Auburn, and others, according to PrepXtra at the Knoxville News Sentinel.
Higgins has been one of the stars on the Oak Ridge football team as well, including on offense, defense (where he has primarily played cornerback), and special teams, where he has been a punt returner.
He won a Mr. Football award in November 2015 as Class 5A Back of the Year. Only one other player from Oak Ridge has won a Mr. Football award; Greg Woofter won the Lineman award in 1998.
Among the finalists for Higgins before he chose the Tigers in football were Ohio State, Florida State, Tennessee, and Ole Miss.
In July, Higgins told PrepXtra that he was no longer considering playing basketball in college, although he had considered playing both sports. Higgins also said then that there was no guarantee he would play high school basketball as a senior.
Higgins has been rated one of the top football and wide receiver prospects in the nation, and he has been considered the number one overall player in Tennessee. On the football field, he’s impressed fans with his leaping catches, even when he’s double-teamed. (See a video of a one-handed catch against Dobyns-Bennett on Blankenship Field this season here.)
Higgins has had 59 catches for 901 yards and 17 touchdowns this season. He’s also returned at least one interception—he had a 90-yard return against Webb a week ago—and at least two punts for touchdowns this season.
He has the opportunity to add to those numbers. The regular season ended last week, but the first round of playoffs starts Friday. Oak Ridge, the number one seed in Region 3-5A, will play Walker Valley, the number four seed in Region 4-5A, at 7 p.m. Friday, November 4, at home on Blankenship Field.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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