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Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE

Posted: 07/18/2014 6:50 PM

Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Westlake's Henry rises to top
on Thu Jul 17, 2014


. Henry, who will be a junior in the fall, has received multiple offers from some of the top college football programs in the country.

Malik Henry recalls the low point.

That came in last season's home opener, on Aug. 30 vs. Canyon, with the Westlake High sophomore quarterback making just his second varsity start. Henry passed for 279 yards but also threw five interceptions — including two returned for first-half touchdowns – during the Warriors' 23-16 defeat.

"That first game (at home) was tough," he said. "I was excited, but still trying to learn so much. I was having trouble reading defenses and that led to mistakes. Too many mistakes."

The player's personal apex becomes trickier to pinpoint.

Truth is, it hasn't happened yet. Or, truly, how high is the sky?

It continues to rise like the team's expectations this fall, with a talented Westlake football team chasing a Marmonte League championship and, maybe just maybe, a CIF-Southern Section Pac-5 Division crown.

It keeps soaring like the quarterback's meteoric rise to prominence. After one season as the Warriors' starter, Henry will enter the 2014 campaign widely acclaimed as the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback in the Class of 2016.

Currently, he owns 11 collegiate offers with many more surely on the way. Already in: UCLA, USC, Notre Dame, Florida State, Arizona State, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Tennessee, Alabama-Birmingham and Wisconsin. Ohio State, Penn State, California and Washington will likely soon follow.

"He will be able to go wherever he wants," said Westlake coach Jim Benkert.

Nearly as soon as the 2013 season ended, Henry's stature (6-foot-3, 185 pounds), arm strength and mobility sent his stock soaring like Apple.

College coaches began calling and the attention intensified with each football camp. Henry wowed 'em at the Elite 11 Los Angeles QB Camp in Santa Monica last January, setting up a hectic spring and a whirlwind summer.

In between workouts and 7-on-7 competitions with his Westlake teammates, Henry has been on the run attending various camps and college campuses. Ohio State, Notre Dame, Michigan State andMichigan have been among the tour stops this summer.

On Wednesday, he was visiting national champion Florida State.

"I'm using this time to make as many unofficial visits as I can," he said before he left for Florida. "When the time comes to narrow my list, I want to make the best decision I can make."

Henry's stature has seemingly transformed him to celebrity status wherever he visits.

Local sportswriters and fans began tweeting nearly as soon as he stepped foot on the Florida State campus in Tallahassee on Wednesday.

Despite the attention, Henry insists he'll stay grounded. He also shrugs off his stature among the nation's top-ranked recruits.

"It's exciting to know that hard work pays off, but I've got to keep working if I want to stay on top," he said. "Coach (Benkert) told me from the beginning that I had a chance to become a college quarterback, but he also told me it's all about hard work and preparation."

Henry's sophomore season demonstrated his ability to rise above adversity.

Following the loss to Canyon, Henry didn't mope, he learned.

"I'd sit down with coach and go through the game tapes play by play," he said. "He'd point what I did wrong and what I did right, and I basically learned from my mistakes. It helped me to be more and more confident."

After a 2-2 start, Westlake trailed 7-0 at Crespi. In the second half, Henry tossed a pair of touchdown passes to spark a 24-14 victory.

"We realized at halftime that we had to make him as comfortable as possible running the offense," Benkert said. "The big thing was to protect him and give him a chance to make plays with his arm.

"He came out and had a big second half and that basically changed our season. We became a different team after that."

With Henry hooking up with Andre Baccellia on touchdown passes of 49 and 13 yards, Westlake upset St. Bonaventure the next week in the Marmonte League opener, 31-17.

The Warriors ended the regular season on a six-game winning streak, including a 39-36 victory over Oaks Christian in the league championship game.

Westlake finished 8-3, and Henry clearly established himself as a budding star. He threw for 2,362 yards and 21 touchdowns with 10 interceptions while completing 196 of 320 pass attempts.

The goal for 2014: Bigger, stronger and better.

"I worked on my strength and speed all through the offseason," he said. "I'm excited to get started. We've got a lot of guys coming back, but we've also got guys coming up from the JV team. I've been throwing a lot with them, just trying to get our chemistry together."

Blessed with ability to throw and run, Henry is keeping one more option open for his future.

While the immediate focus has been on football, Henry says he retains his love for baseball and isn't ready to abandon his dreams of one day playing in the big leagues.

In fact, he wants to play both sports in college.

"I've thought a lot about doing that," he said. "The coaches at the schools I've visited have said I can do both. You never know what can happen in the future. I'd like to keep that possibility open."

© 2014 Ventura County Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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Posted: 07/18/2014 9:28 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


I saw it in his eye's he never quit after throwing 5 picks he kept coming!!! I am very VERY proud of Malik and his true Prominence has yet to be realized!! I am very excited to see where and what this nice young man decides to do!!! Good Luck to All Go Warriors 2014 and Beyond!
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Posted: 07/20/2014 2:05 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


biggrin MH looks good here. Ditto Sias, D. Lee & B. Lee

7x7 Westlake at 'Nade, Spring 2014
feat. Malik Henry, Sias, Lee x2

redface Cut from clip was an embarrassing explosion from Westlake coach, dressing down a kid, for a mistake, in front of everyone, field went silent, all eyes/ears on kid and coach...not the way to teach, imo.  I hope the coach realized his mistake and apologized.

Last edited 07/20/2014 9:17 PM by SidelineVideo

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Posted: 07/20/2014 11:50 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


The rating are strange and not always helpul to he player. Malik needs to be the player he can be and not try to live up to a rating which is based on very little information. Being crowned king before you are ready is very dangerous to the player. If he keeps developing he will be fine. Everyone of these kids who are lucky and good enough to get D-1 scollys have a lot of work to just get on the field in college. Look at Nick Isham who was better than him in High School. Most people don't realize how many good football players there are in this country. Just be the best he can be.
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Posted: 07/22/2014 10:49 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Henry seems to have a ton of high school talent. Let's pump the brakes on the hype for the time being and allow the D1 schools to do what they do, by falling all over themselves over the height of a soph. QB. 21/10 TD to INT and no final 7/7  victories in the Spring is not hype worthy, especially with a pass happy program. Lets see how the next five months go.

Jim "Bud Kilmer" Benkert and the rest of his "warm and caring"---cough..cough coaches might run this talented QB right out of football just like they did with Justin Moore after three seasons.

Last edited 07/22/2014 10:53 AM by ConejoRez1

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Posted: 07/22/2014 10:54 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Gave Hart a run for their money in the final at Pierce, and Westlake was without their best receiver. Would have been in more but Henry was at college visits or camps.    Conejorez(jackass)
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Posted: 07/22/2014 11:05 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Thanks Mr. Hunter! The hype simply does not match 21/10, in which he was not on travel and his "best" receiver" was there. Just slow the gums for now WL and measure on total body of work; something you guys are not very good at!
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Posted: 07/22/2014 1:18 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 



ConejoRez1 wrote: Thanks Mr. Hunter! The hype simply does not match 21/10, in which he was not on travel and his "best" receiver" was there. Just slow the gums for now WL and measure on total body of work; something you guys are not very good at!

Give a rest dude !!! The negativity must ooze out of your pores on a daily basis ...jeezzz

"Lake Fan"

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Posted: 07/22/2014 2:20 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


After 25 years with Bud Kilmer' (JB) recruiting all of the Rhodes Scholars into our area ,we Conejo residents are begging for YOU to please, give it a rest! 
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Posted: 07/22/2014 10:06 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Conejorez sounds just a teeny bit racist after that last post.
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Posted: 07/23/2014 10:31 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


And you Hunter are a teeny bit racist with your insinuation that I am white! I don't care if someone is white, black, blue or green, if they live in the Conejo Valley, really live in NP, TO or WL, I prefer that they populate our class rooms and athletic fields.
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Posted: 07/23/2014 11:01 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Never actually said the word white did I? Just sick of your bitching.
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Posted: 07/23/2014 11:53 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 



ConejoRez1 wrote: And you Hunter are a teeny bit racist with your insinuation that I am white! I don't care if someone is white, black, blue or green, if they live in the Conejo Valley, really live in NP, TO or WL, I prefer that they populate our class rooms and athletic fields.

Yea N.P. is just loading up local kids right now eek1? I dont see you bagging on them?, Your true hate just directed at Westlake is blantant obvious......And don't assume I am a thug either based on your past posts blasted at me, I still remember the chit comments u tossed my way a couple of months ago. Your community closet comments about YOUR valley is pretty creepy for sure and shows your true colors.....Now come back with good one spin doctor....

"Lake Fan"

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Posted: 07/23/2014 1:56 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Sorry fellas, I'm not going to go back and forth with you. I've lived in the CV for more than 35 years and have knowledge far beyond your three years of the local school scene, educators and coaches. I know the local, high character educators and coaches and low character educators and coaches. Sorry but Bud Kilmer is in the latter. I could provide many examples, but do not have three days to compile them. Me and hundreds of my friends and colleagues know all about the self esteem raking Lepari and Benkert regime and the misguided approach to getting the W on Friday nights. You go right ahead and wave your blue pom poms. You ignorance continues to surface. I honestly feel sorry for you Jima. And yes, your thug like posts and rants are conspicuous. Have a nice day!biggrin Or, Peace Out Brotha'! BYE BYE!

The handling of the Conti situation is one of many prime examples.

As far as Westlake High: Many, many dedicated and great educators, great group of kids and excellent run programs.
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Posted: 07/23/2014 2:00 PM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


Hunter: no you didn't say white, hence the insinuation claim between your lines. Playing dumb now? You too enjoy your day!
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Posted: 07/24/2014 12:03 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


What I didn't like was your comments about "Rhodes Scholars" into "our area". Which translates into "thug transfers into our gated community" Your not the only one who has lived here a long time. This is a football fan board, not a complain, I'm a little bitch board. If you don't have anything good to say shut up and go somewhere else. You and McCain could compete for Little Bitch in Basketball 2.
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Posted: 07/24/2014 11:23 AM

Re: Malik Henry Can he live up to all the HYPE 


You call it "being a bitch", I call it what it is.....information related to WL allowing the world outside of your li'l Westlake Circle know about the low character leadership involved with the athletes. No angst, no bitching, no hating, just twenty years of experiences and knowledge. Enjoy your Westlake High Day! Funny how twisted you, jima and others get at the information being shared. Why get so spun out, if there is no weight/merit? Bye Bye!
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