During the next four weeks, the Star will count down the top 10 football players from each major Southern Arizona high school program:
The best: Richard Griffith
Achievements: Griffith received the Brian Murray Award in 1987, given annually to Arizona's best high school lineman. The defensive tackle recorded 109 tackles and nine sacks his senior year. On offense, the 6-foot-5-inch, 220-pound Griffith caught 25 balls for 255 yards and three TDs, earning second-team all-Class AAA (5A today) tight end honors in 1987, along with a scholarship to Arizona, where he was named a Sporting News freshman All-American in 1989. Despite being mainly a blocker, the tight end caught 26 passes in 40 starts over four years at UA, earning Pac-10 honorable mention as a senior. He was selected by the New England Patriots in the fifth round of the 1993 NFL draft, then spent five years with the Jacksonville Jaguars as a tight end/long snapper, starting a career-high 15 games in 1995. Griffith last played in the NFL in 2000.
From the archives: "I just think he could be an outstanding tight end. He's got the size. He's got the character and all those other nice things." - Arizona head coach Dick Tomey, in the Dec. 26, 1989, Arizona Daily Star
The big number: 16. Griffith's best statistical season in the NFL came as a Jaguar in 1995, when he caught 16 passes for 243 yards.
Coming up: The top 10 players from Catalina Foothills revealed Thursday.
On StarNet: Check each day during the series to find the newest addition to the Star's galleries of top 10 football players at each major Southern Arizona school azstarnet.com/highschool
Catalina High School's top 10
1. Richard Griffith, TE/DL, 1988
2. John Svob, QB, 1967
3. Steve Budinger, LB/DL, 1977
4. Aaron Butler, WR, 2002
5. Phillip Pickett, RB/LB, 2003
6. Pablo Henriquez, RB, 1999
7. Ray Morales, RB, 2010
8. Chuck Cole, WR/DB, 2003
9. James Eichberger, RB, 2008
10. Darrian McIver, QB/DB, 2011