For the first time in the history of the SPARQ National Championship, the player who came in to the evening event as the No. 1 qualifier took home the title. At The Opening 2014, Kirk Merritt put on quite the show to walk away with the championship.
In the morning session, each of the athletes tested in the 40 yard dash, 20 yard shuttle, vertical leap and power ball throw and the top 10 qualifiers advanced to the evening final.
Merritt measured in at 5-11, 203 pounds and clocked a 4.43-40, 4.06 shuttle, threw the power ball 41’ and jumped 45.5 inches in the vertical.
“This was an incredible experience and I’m very honored and humbled by it,” Merritt said. “I went to the NIKE Combine in New Orleans and only ran a 4.60-40 so I knew I had a lot of work to do and could get a lot better.
“I definitely trained hard and to win this competition against the best athletes in the country is incredible. This was the best of the best out here and like I said, I’m very humbled by it.”
Merritt is definitely more than just a workout warrior, he's a top 300 player nationally by Scout.com and ranked among the top running backs in the country. Schools from across the country including Alabama, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Notre Dame, Oregon, Penn State, Tennessee and Texas A&M have all offered the gifted athlete.