While Khairi Fortt gets all the attention, the person standing next to him in the middle of the field for Stamford High School’s defense is another player who opposing coaches scheme against.
If a vote was made to select the most underrated player in the FCIAC, Black Knights linebacker Pat Atkinson would be prominent in the discussion.
After two games Atkinson has 32 tackles and two forced fumbles. Following Friday night’s 41-7 loss to Greenwich, Stamford coach Kevin Jones raved about Atkinson, who had 19 tackles. That may have been the first time a coach ever was so effusive praising a player on a defense that gave up that many points.
Atkinson is soft spoken on the field but is a dynamic presence once the whistle blows.
I’ll have a column on Atkinson in Friday’s paper. Here is a video I shot of him today, in which Atkinson talked about what it is like playing with Fortt — the two have been teammates since the 4th grade — how football is his second favorite sport, and his unusual career goals.