St. Vincent-St. Mary rising senior DeAmonte’ King has pledged to play football on scholarship for West Virginia University as a defensive back.

“I have been to West Virginia three times,” King said. “I went to the spring game and I liked what I saw and heard. Growing up, I have always watched West Virginia. It has always been a school I wanted to go to.

“When they offered me, I was surprised that I had the opportunity to actually go there. It was my first Power Five Conference school to offer me.”

King also held scholarship offers from Akron, Kent State, Ohio, Toledo, Miami (Ohio), Boston College, Buffalo, Western Michigan and Eastern Kentucky.

“During the visits and the process, I got really close with the coaches,” King said. “I really love the coaching staff. I got to see the campus, the facilities and see them practice in a game situation with the spring game. I really enjoyed myself when I was there.”

King, an Akron resident, said he held a 3.3 grade-point average as a junior. He has earned three letters in track and field, and two letters apiece in football and basketball.

King started as a wide receiver and defensive back in 2015 as the St. V-M football team finished 11-2 and made a Division III playoff appearance. Both of the Irish’s losses were against Archbishop Hoban, the eventual Division III state champion.

King also contributed to the 2014 St. V-M football team as the Irish went 11-3 and was a state semifinalist in Division III after winning state titles in 2013 and 2012.

King capped his junior year in track and field by helping St. V-M win the Division II state title in the 800-meter relay (1:28.21) in June in Columbus. He was on the second place 1,600 relay (3:20.39) and placed third individually in the 400 (47.38 seconds).

“DeAmonte’ is a kid who is 6-foot-1, and a cornerback-wide receiver with legit 4.4 [seconds] speed [in the 40-yard dash],” St. V-M first-year football coach Marcus Wattley said. “I think a lot of schools will be kicking themselves that they didn’t offer DeAmonte’ a chance to play at their school.”

OHSAA announcement

Former Ohio High School Athletic Association Board of Directors President Dave Gray has been named interim commissioner of the OHSAA.

Tim Stried, the OHSAA director of Information Services, said Gray will fill in for OHSAA Commissioner Dr. Dan Ross, who is recovering from a series of health setbacks.

Gray spent 37 years in the Franklin Monroe school district in Pitsburg, Ohio, before retiring in 2012. He has served as chair of the OHSAA’s Student Eligibility Appeals Panel for the past three years after being a member of the OHSAA’s Southwest District Athletic Board for 29 years. He was the OHSAA board of directors vice president in 1992-1993 and president in 2010-2011.

“The board of directors felt that our No. 1 priority was for Dan to regain his strength and strictly concentrate on getting healthy,” said Steve Stirn, the current OHSAA board of directors president. “At the same time, we recognize that the commissioner’s position has so many duties and the office staff has a lot on their plates, so we believe the appropriate move was to appoint someone to help ensure that we do not fall off course and continue to provide all of the services that our member schools expect.”

Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or mbeaven@thebeaconjournal.com. Read the #ABJVarsity high school blog at www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MBeavenABJ.