Ben Carroll, LB, Arlington High
His night: In Arlington’s 33-29 win over Bowie on Friday, Carroll had 22 total tackles, including four sacks and two others for losses. He also broke up a pass and recorded an interception. On special teams, he punted three times for a 44-yard average, returned three kickoffs for 112 yards (an average of 37 yards) and also blocked a punt for a safety.
His story: From pee-wee through middle school, Carroll has always played multiple positions. Last season, he was an outside linebacker for the Colts before moving inside this year.
His goals: Carroll didn’t set any specific individual goals prior to the season, but just wanted to focus on team goals and making the playoffs. Carroll said he would eventually like to play football in college, but doesn’t currently have plans in place.
Most memorable moment: Carroll said, “I like to think of every game as a highlight, so there’s not really one specific moment.” But if pressed for one, he said the blocked punt against Bowie on Friday stood out.
His favorite player: Ben has always looked up to his older brother, Wade Carroll, a 2013 Arlington graduate. He also said he’s tried to imitate the play of former Colt and current TCU linebacker Sammy Douglas.
He said: “I’m loving [middle linebacker] because really no matter what play it is, I’m always somewhere in there. Just being able to fly around on defense makes it a great place for me to be … If I could, I would play linebacker, return kicks, I would punt and I would play offense. I just wouldn’t want to come off the field.
“It never becomes difficult doing what you love. I’ve always loved to play different sports and see how I match up against other people. To go from football to soccer to baseball is actually kind of fun.”
Coach Scott Peach said: “Ben Carroll is the best athlete at Arlington High School, and I’m not just talking about football. He can do everything. There is nothing athletically that Ben Carroll can’t do. He’s the type of kid that could play every position on the field. He could play every position on offense, but we’ve always just put him at linebacker.
“He begs weekly to be able to play wide receiver for us in our offense. He begs weekly to be able to hold kicks on PATs and field goals. He constantly comes into the indoor facility after practice to kick 40-yard field goals. He loves to play the game of football and loves to be a part of every aspect of the game. If we told him he got to play every snap, all game long, he would love it.”
Notable: Carroll is also the goalkeeper on the soccer team and third baseman on the baseball team.