CHARLESTON — Who knows, someday maybe someone will top the Charleston school record 2,283 passing yards set by Sean Hussey this football all-state season.
Maybe someday he will not be able to cite his 141-for-229 passing accuracy or 24 touchdown passes.
But other things are sure to last.
“I would say the greatest memories were just celebrating with the team in the locker room after a win,” Hussey said.
He got to do that plenty of times going 20-4 the past two seasons.
Leading this year’s 9-2 Trojans who lost in the second round to eventual state champion Rochester, Hussey has been named to the Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Class 4A all-state team.
“Obviously, I was really excited,” Hussey said of learning of his latest award. “It’s a good honor but I can’t give enough thanks and gratitude to all my teammates for helping me.”
The record-setting individual and team success for Hussey was hardly a surprise to Charleston coach Brian Halsey.
“I saw him play in sixth grade,” Halsey said. “That’s when I knew. That’s when I knew he was pretty special and that great things could happen.
“I do that from time to time,” the Trojans football coach said of scouting upcoming athletes. “I’ll go to JFL. I’ll go to little league and Babe Ruth games. It’s not unheard of me to go to a middle school game. I’m always looking for talent and always looking for character.”
Whether he knew Halsey was penciling into the lineup his quarterback for seasons 2010-12, Hussey recalls those Junior Football League games.
“I do remember those days,” he said “It doesn’t feel like that long ago. Riley McInerney was our main receivers.”
While McInerney wound up a two-time cross country all-stater following in the footsteps of his father and former Eastern Illinois NCAA Division II All-American John McInerney, Hussey surpassed passing records that had at one time been held by his father, Kevin, at Charleston.
“I’ve been lucky,” Sean Hussey said. “I’ve had a lot of good athletes around me that made me look better. I’ve also had great coaches. My dad has been a great teacher through the years.”
So the kid did not get thrown out of the house for throwing more touchdown passes than his dad did.
“All joking aside, I think he’s pretty happy,” Sean Hussey said. “We joke around but that but I think he’s happy with what I’ve done.”
So are plenty of others from Charleston.
“He was honorable-mention all-state last year,” Halsey said. “He’s very deserving. He has rewritten the record books here at Charleston High School in terms of the passing game.”
The third-year starter Hussey became a coach on the field.
“He sure was,” Halsey said. “Just a great, great football mind, excellent student, and he’s a better person.”
Whether this leads to college football remains in question after receiving earlier recruiting interest from Eastern Illinois and Illinois State.
“At this point I have no offers,” Hussey said. “I don’t have an offer from Eastern or Illinois State, and both of those schools (have verbal commitments) from other quarterbacks. I’m still interested in the criminal justice program at Illinois State. From here on I’m keeping my options open.
“It’s my first time through the recruiting process. We’ll see what happens these next few months. I think everything happens for a reason.”
Regardless, the all-state quarterback can relish his recent success that may have been cut short by a tough draw in the IHSA playoffs with a second-round loss to Rochester, which went on to win a third straight state championship.
“It was a real fun year,” Hussey said. “It was a good senior year. Obviously we would have liked to have gone further but I think we made a lot of great memories.
“I just want to say the past few years playing Charleston football has been an awesome run. Those have been really exciting experiences. The big crowds, those are things I’ll never forget.”
Four Trojans are Academic All-State
CHARLESTON — Four members of Charleston’s 9-2 Apollo Conference football championship team are All-Academic All-Staters.
Chosen by the Illinois Football Coaches Association were Sean Hussey, Truston Winnett, Dillan Cazley and Dan Hildebrandt.
“We had a team full of guys like that,” Charleston coach Brian Halsey said. “When you have smart athletic players, you’re going to have success.”
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