Last Wednesday was the day high school and junior college athletes could sign a binding letter of intent to attend NCAA colleges. Many football players signing with Division I programs sport baseball caps from the schools and have their families nearby to witness the ceremony.
But other athletes from other sports also sign binding letters of intent on that same day.
At Jefferson High, sprinter Danté Price had his parents on hand in the school’s media center to sign his letter of intent to run track at Virginia Tech of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Price has been a real force in West Virginia track and field circles as well as running in AAU events in the off season.
As a sophomore, Price won both the 100 meter and 200 meter dash at Laidley Field in Charleston as Jefferson was crowned the Class AAA state champion. That was in 2011. Price was also on meet-winning sprint relay teams that year.
As a junior in 2012, Price was again the state champion in both the 100 meter and 200 meter dashes. He was again a member of a winning relay team at the state track and field meet in Charleston as the Cougars defended their state title and won a third consecutive state championship.
Price even moved up to 400 meters at times. His versatility had to increase his value as a collegiate athlete.
Price has run in winters in large AAU meets in the midwest as well as Baltimore and New York City.
As a senior this spring, Price will be the linchpin in any repeat success the Cougars experience. Should the Cougars win a fourth straight state championship this spring, it would send the diminutive Price off to Blacksburg as a three-time member of a state winner.
Virginia Tech has been a contender for ACC track and field titles in recent years.
The Hokies won the conference’s 2012 outdoor championship and were second in both 2011 and 2010.
Indoor track and field at Virginia Tech is also historically strong. There was an ACC indoor championship in 2011 and the Hokies were second in 2012.
Price is moving to a college program that has the funding and the university’s support.
But first there is the 2013 spring season at Jefferson. And an athlete is only a senior one time.