Star tackle Floyd hungry to be a Gator

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Inquirer Staff Writer

Sharrif Floyd, a senior at George Washington High School who signed a letter of intent yesterday to play football for Florida, has a stack of honors.

He is considered by many to be the best high school defensive tackle in the country. One scouting service lists him as the No. 4 player overall nationally. The Maxwell Club named Floyd the national player of the year.

Football isn’t his only specialty, however.

“Try to feed him,” George Washington coach Ron Cohen said yesterday, joking about his 305-pounder. “I’m glad he’s going to the University of Florida. I can take him off my income taxes now.”

Floyd talked yesterday about the time recently when Cohen and his wife took him to dinner at Applebee’s.

“You two are getting the two-for-$20?” Floyd said to his coach. “I’m going to get the two-for-$20.”

George Washington line coach Pat Montgomery took Floyd to Famous Dave’s just off Roosevelt Boulevard. Waiters who weren’t serving Floyd came out to watch him take care of a couple of dozen wings, a full burger meal, and a Caesar salad.

“We went to breakfast at the Country Club Diner,” Cohen said. “A normal breakfast costs about $9. His cost $27. He had three orange juices – large. He had two full breakfast plates, plus extra bagels, pancakes, bacon.”

George Washington weight coach Greg Garrett is impressed by what Floyd can put away, but more impressed by his work in the weight room.

When Floyd showed up in ninth grade as a 275-pounder, he could bench-press roughly 205 pounds. By the 11th grade, he benched 405 pounds. Just fooling around, Floyd could pick up over 300 pounds and bench it five or six times, Garrett said.

Cohen said the Public League probably would not see a player of Floyd’s caliber again.

“I’d like to see somebody more dedicated and a harder worker than Sharrif Floyd,” Cohen said.

Don’t look for him to compete this week in the Wing Bowl, although he probably could do that.

“He’s starting to eat healthy, too,” Cohen said.

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