Cardinal Hayes coach C.J. O’Neil has a warning for anyone standing in Tim Poindexter’s way on the football field next season.

“He is going to play his senior year and some people are going to get some physical [football],” the coach said. They are going to get banged up because he is playing with a chip on his shoulder to prove he is the best football player in the city.”

Poindexter began doing that as a sophomore as the Cardinals physical star running back, leading his team to the CHSFL Class AA title. A preseason shoulder injury last year hindered his performance early on and the rising senior finds himself needing to prove himself again and put his name back in that discussion.

“A lot of people expected a lot last year and I didn’t live up to expectations so this year I am playing with a chip on my shoulder to pass the expectations,” Poindexter said.

The 5-foot-10, 185-pound Poindexter is determined to do that and raise his stock with colleges and he tries to earn a scholarship as a safety now. He has interest from MAC schools like UMass, Toledo, Ohio and Buffalo. Stony Brook and Fordham are also in the picture.

Poindexter earned offers early on from the likes of Rutgers and Boston College as running back, but many big programs are taking a wait and see approach with him as a safety because of his size. He needs to prove he can cover players bigger than him.

“He is going to have to play his butt off and see who comes calling,” O’Neil said

He more than proved what a combination of speed and power he is with the ball in his hand as a sophomore. Poindexter 1,379 yards and 20 touchdowns He never got to build off that momentum. The injury to his shoulder kept him out of games early as Hayes made the jump to the CHSFL’s AAA division. Poindexter couldn’t hit has hard and use his strength to get the extra yard. Junior Justin Covington excelled in the role as the team’s primary back.

“That’s the only way i know how to play. so being limited wasn’t the best thing for me.” Poindexter said.

Poindexter however showed he could be a force on the other side of the ball also at safety. He made 48 tackles and collected two interceptions.

“I don’t think anyone is questioning his ability to tackle in space,” O’Neil said. “His ability to tackle in space is as good as any kids that I’ve had.”

Poindexter knows what he wants and understands what is at stake. He plans on accomplishing it all the only way he knows how with some physical football. His opponents have been warned.

“He is going to leave a path of carnage on the the road to that,” O’Neil said.

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