Stratford High School senior long snapper Connor Able remembers watching the All-American Bowl game as a child. He fantasized about being able to play in the Alamodome on the same turf that NFL players like Ezekiel Elliott, Odell Beckham Jr. and Tim Tebow.
Able, the No. 1 rated long snapper in Texas and the No. 8 ranked player in his position in the nation, was announced as a 2021 All-American Bowl participant. He remembers being ecstatic when discovering the news.
“It’s about the biggest honor I’ve had in my whole life,” Able said while acknowledging his teammates and coach Todd Rankin. “Coach and I are very close. He’s been receptive to it. My teammates have been supportive of me throughout the recruiting and All-American processes.”
The game was scheduled for Jan. 2 before it was canceled due to COVID-19. Able said he was devastated upon hearing the news. Still, he would never forget the honor of being named as a participant and participating in the nationally televised jersey reveal that was aired on NBC before the Thanksgiving break.
“It’s like you’re joining an elite fraternity,” Able said.
That’s an understatement. Since its inception, the All-American Bowl has produced 450 NFL Draft picks, including 100 first-rounders. The 2020 NFL Draft included 40 All-American Bowl participants.
Able is not satisfied with being an elite athlete. He truly exemplifies Spring Branch ISD’s commitment to T-2-4. He has a spotless GPA, is the student council president and is on the SBISD Visioning Committee, which will help shape the district’s future. He has athletic scholarship offers to Army, Air Force and University of Colorado – Boulder. He also has interest from Texas A&M and Texas Tech.
“I think I am extremely prepared for college,” Able said. “I’ve been an SBISD K-12 guy. All three schools [Wilchester Elementary, Memorial Middle School, Stratford High School] that I’ve gone to have set me up extremely well for success in life and academically.”