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North Forest sophomore caps off big year

North Forest sophomore caps off big year
The North Forest sophomore received 48 offers Vype

Demond Demas just capped off a banner year.

The North Forest sophomore saw his football stock explode, reaching a massive 48 offers and then showed off his skills on the track.

Demas leapt his way to the Class 4A Long Jump State Championship, hitting a new personal record of 23-feet-8.50 inches on his final jump of the day to win it all in May.

“It makes me want to train harder,” Demas said. “I finally have a state title. That makes me want to push harder and get another one. This is a huge accomplishment in my life.”

Winning a state title in football or basketball is something Demas imagined, the sophomore admitted, but winning one in track didn’t cross his mind. The feeling of confidence that he could do this overcame him the moment he walked into Mike A. Myers Stadium.

“When I first walked in I had that feeling without a doubt,” Demas said. “I just knew I was going to win. I just jumped hard, played smart and did what I had to do. I’m a state champion.”

Demas’ name was already known before this meet – having an offer from Alabama and a visit from Nick Saban himself will do that. Heading into his junior year at North Forest, Demas holds offers from Alabama, Texas, Texas A&M, Clemson, Florida, LSU, Michigan and Oklahoma, just to name a few.

On top of that notoriety, Demas now has a gold medal around his neck that he admitted he may not even take off when he goes to bed or goes to school.

But Demas guaranteed this is only the beginning for him.

“I can promise you this,” Demas said. “It’s been amazing but there’s more to come.”

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Cristian Javier is in better shape this season. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

As the Astros prepare to play their first game of spring training against the Nationals this Saturday, we're starting to see reports about how the players approached the offseason, and what tweaks they made to improve in the 2024 season.

Cristian Javier is a player Astros fans are hoping bounces back this year, as his ERA jumped from 2.54 in 2022 to 4.56 in 2023. Workload was thought to be one of the main factors causing his regression, he dealt with a dead arm last season and threw more innings than ever before (162).

Another explanation could be the pitch clock. This was another new element all pitchers had to deal with last year, and that also likely played a role in his struggles.

But according to The Athletic's Chandler Rome, Javier believes he was carrying some extra weight last season. Add that to some mechanical issues he was experiencing, and his struggles in 2023 make a lot more sense. And to be fair, he wouldn't be the first person to get a little fat and happy after winning a World Series.

In an effort to get back on track in 2024, Javier said he lost around 15 pounds this offseason. With the pitch clock not going anywhere, pitchers need to be in better cardiac shape than ever before.

Hopefully this modification helps Javier return to form and put up jaw-dropping numbers like he did in 2022. This rotation needs Javier to be the dominate pitcher we all know he's capable of being. With Justin Verlander behind schedule and Framber Valdez trying to bounce back from his own down year, Houston will depend on Javier like never before.

The Astros are certainly counting on it after giving him a 5-year, $64 million contract last season. Javier will definitely be a player to watch this spring.

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