Lovejoy defensive back Montrell Custis has been nominated for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, which will be played in early January in Texas. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)
HAMPTON — For the second straight season, a player from Lovejoy has been nominated for the annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl all-star game.
Wildcats wide receiver Preston Williams and cornerback Montrell Custis are on the selections committee’s watch list, which was released on Friday morning. Of the 400 nominees, 90 will be invited to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, which will be played in January.
In all, there are 43 rising seniors from the state that have been nominated for the game, which will be televised live on NBC.
“The U.S. Army All-American Bowl is a unique celebration of high school athletes, musicians and the American Soldier,” Mark S. Davis, deputy assistant secretary of the Army for marketing, said in a statement. “This nomination recognizes the mental, emotional and physical strengths, as well as the leadership qualities these athletes possess both on and off the field; qualities they share with Army Strong Soldiers. We look forward to the continued opportunity to showcase the talents of America’s youth during the All-American Bowl Selection Tour and Bowl Week.”
The committee will start announcing its selections starting in September. Last season, former Lovejoy linebacker DeMarquis Gates was a nominee. Gates, who signed with Ole Miss this past February, did not play his senior season at Lovejoy while recovering from knee surgery.
The 6-foot-4, 190-pound Williams is considered a five-star prospect by 247Sports, a national recruiting service. He is ranked by 247Sports as the nation’s No. 20 overall prospect and No. 1 wide receiver in the 2015 class.
Williams, who is committed to Tennessee, was an all-state player after helping lead Lovejoy to its fourth straight region title. The Wildcats advanced to the second round of the Class AAAAAA playoffs last season.
Williams had 56 receptions for 1,402 yards and 14 touchdowns. He also returned three punts for touchdowns and had two interceptions on defense.
On Thursday, the record-setting track and field standout won the Class AAAAAA long jump with a leap of 24-feet, 2.5 inches. He was runner-up in the triple jump event as the Wildcats are in contention for the championship in the state’s highest classification.
Custis, who is rated as a four-star prospect by most recruiting services, committed to Alabama last month. He originally committed to Kentucky before the season ended, but switched after the Crimson Tide offered on a visit.
He was the first commitment of the 2015 class for the Wildcats. According to 247Sports, the 6-foot, 175-pounder is the No. 28 cornerback prospect in the junior class.