Washington Prep senior Anthony Whitsey is a multisport athlete who has competed in football, track and field, basketball, and baseball. This year marked his fourth year playing varsity football.
Whitsey has been playing football and basketball since the age of five. He competed in Pop Warner football at Jesse Owens park.
“It really helped me on and off the field, keeps me off the streets,” Whitsey said. “I really love the game, Sean Taylor was one of my favorites, I really looked up to him. Kam Chancellor from Seattle; he retired a few years ago. I really look up to those guys.”
Spending time with football veterans helped Whitsey develop leadership skills.
“I always hung around older guys so I had to mature faster than I had to,” Whitsey said. “I really learned from the best or learned from mature people that was older than me and the captains of this old team.”
Last season, playing football taught him the importance of getting his teammates involved. He noted how teammates see that as a quality of a leader.
“I can be a little selfish, but I make sure to involve others,” Whitsey said. “You never know what they could do until the opportunity comes.”
In track and field, Whitsey competes in the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m relays. Last season, he qualified for the CIF State Championship meet.
“I played versus the best: San Pedro, Dorsey, Birmingham. It was fun,” Whitsey said. “Competition, it was different, I wasn’t used to it, but it really helped me improve my game.”
For Whitsey, being a student athlete means putting in the same level of effort in his academics as he does in sports. Studying school subjects helped Whitsey gain more insight on the field.
“You gotta have the grades for it for sure,” Whitsey said. “[If] you want to go to college, I advise you gotta have a 3.0 or higher.”
Physics and Biology are Whitsey’s favorite subjects; He enjoys science classes because he loves nature.
“You got to make sure you do everything early … so you won’t have to go back,” Whitsey said. “When your are a senior, you don’t have to worry about going back to make up any classes.”
Whitsey has also faced obstacles in his athletic career; last season, an injury made him fear that his football-playing days were in jeopardy.
“Last year when I got hurt, I couldn’t feel my leg for a week,” Whitsey said. “I thought my career was done but I started getting the feeling from my leg, I start working out even more.”
Outside of athletics and academics, Whitsey mentors local youth.
“I try to go back to Woodcrest, where I played at, and help the little kids or people like 14, 13, people younger than me, try to help them out,’ Whitsey said.
Whitsey aspires to earn a college scholarship and play division I football.