At 6-foot-2 and 235 pounds, with the brute strength to run over defenders, the agility to step around them and the speed to leave them grasping for his shirttail, Eden Prairie running back Anthony Anderson was the breakout star of the 2013 Class 6A football playoffs.
In only his second year as a running back, Anderson had college coaches wondering how talent like his could have escaped their notice.
“I heard from a lot of coaches after the state tournament who had never heard of me before,” Anderson said.
Due to his inexperience at the position — he moved up to the Eden Prairie varsity as a tight end — and his lateness to the recruiting dance and all of the steps needed to be eligible, Anderson will play for Iowa Western Junior College in Council Bluffs, Iowa, this fall. If he continues to improve, a Division I football opportunity is likely.
Staff writer Jim Paulsen caught up with Anderson to find how much his impressive senior season has changed his life.
Q: Looking back, how do you remember the football season?
A: I was nervous going in. There was a lot of pressure and not a lot of people knew who I was. I wasn’t sure I could do a lot.
Q: How did you overcome that?
A: Honestly, I wanted to prove myself to people. But I couldn’t have done anything without the help of my teammates and my friends. That was the biggest part of it.
Q: What has happened in the months since the tournament?
A: I’ve had a lot of opportunities and a lot of doors have opened up. I didn’t go the route that others go, but I’m still going to work hard to get my chance.
Q: Why Iowa Western?
A: The only junior colleges I talked to were Arizona Western and Iowa Western, which both have good football programs. I was originally going to Arizona Western, but I talked to [University of Minnesota] Coach Kill and he said that Iowa Western is also a school that really looks out for you academically.
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