Of course, running back Kaedric Cobbs’ superb freshman season for Melissa’s varsity football squad last fall did not go unnoticed around these parts. But now his exploits have garnered national attention. Last week, MaxPreps named him to its 2016 Freshmen All-American team, which features 60 of the nation’s top high school football players from the Class of 2020.


Last season, the 5-foot-9-inch, 195-pound Cobbs rushed for 1,272 yards and 16 touchdowns on 125 carries and was tabbed Offensive Newcomer of the Year in District 5-4A Division II. Averaging more than 100 yards per game, Cobbs helped lead the Cardinals to an 8-4 record and a bi-district playoff win. He’s also a starting guard on Melissa’s basketball team and runs track.


MaxPreps selected Cobbs to its second-team offensive backfield, a crew that includes running backs Darrian Meads of Hokes Bluff, Ala., and Gaige Garcia of Catawissa, Pa.


“This is a tremendous honor for Kaedric,” Seth Stinton, Melissa boys’ athletic director and Cobbs’ head coach in football, said. “He works his tail off and does a lot of behind the scenes work on his own to get this accomplishment. He had a fantastic freshman year and was a huge part of our success this year. He is a great young man who will do great things for the Melissa Cardinals in the future.”


Cobbs said the significance of the position is not lost on him.


“It’s an amazing honor to be in a category with some the best football players in America,” Cobbs said. “I am really humbled. Without God’s love and grace, I know none of this would be possible. I want to give credit to our o-line coaches and the offensive line. And I want to thank Ja’Bray Young and Breelyn Armstrong — the best teammates I could ask for — and my mom and dad, who work so hard on keeping me grounded while loving me unconditionally and motivating me to be my very best. … I love the city of Melissa, I love Melissa ISD. And it is my heart’s desire to help win multiple state championships here.”


Of course, Cobbs’s parents also got to share in the news.


“My husband and I are blessed to have two wonderful boys,” said Cobbs’ mother, Shana Cobbs. “I am very proud of Kaedric. I love to see that all the work Kaedric does behind the scenes — running 400s, pulling tires, running outside in the heat of the summer and his relentless attitude in the weight-room — is paying off. I want Kaedric to continue to put God first and run with perseverance the race marked out for him.”


Cobbs’ father is Coach Bel Cobbs, who coaches running backs and is special teams coordinator for the Cardinals.


“I’m very proud of Kaedric and the work he has put in,” Bel said. “I’m appreciative for Melissa ISD because this school district has provided an environment where Kaedric can grow spiritually, academically and, of course, athletically. (MISD Superintendent) Keith Murphy, Seth Stinton and (MHS principal) Kenneth Wooten have gone above and beyond in showing their support for Kaedric. The coaching staff and all of Kaedric’s teammates deserve a huge shout-out too. Trevor Duggan, Donte Brooks, Alfonso Viramontes, Adam Rogers and David Ferrier did a great job blocking all year. … I told Kaedric, ‘Continue to act justly and to love mercy and walk humbly with your God, and great things will continue to happen.’”


See the entire Freshman All-American Team at MaxPreps.com.