Thursday, May 25, 2023 | 2 a.m.
Christian Thatcher, a 6-foot-2, 192-pound sophomore linebacker, picked up scholarship offers from Oklahoma, Colorado and West Virginia all on the same day earlier this May. The next day, USC followed suit. Oregon did so about a week later.
“I kind of expect [the offers] now at this point,” Thatcher said. “Of course it’s awesome, but I’ve worked hard for this and it’s all paying off, so I just thank God and feel very blessed this is happening.”
Catch one glimpse of Thatcher on the field and it’s easy to see why he has drawn so much attention. He looks like one of the best tacklers in state history, and his exact goal is to someday stand alone as the single most prolific.
He wants to end his career at Arbor View as Nevada’s all-time leading high school tacker. The current record stands at 427, set by Damonte Ranch’s Richie Garcia from 2014-217.
Thatcher is at 232 tackles through two seasons. “I’m on pace,” he said. “Two more years, we should beat it.”
As if his football exploits weren’t enough, Thatcher jumped back into wrestling this year after participating in the sport when he was younger. Using it primarily as a way to stay in shape and physical outside of football, he ended up finishing as the state runner-up in his weight class.
In an age where many prep athletes—especially those at Thatcher’s level in football—specialize in one sport, Thatcher is a throwback. His football future won’t stop him from potentially adding another sport next year. “I might go back to playing basketball with my younger brother,” he said.
• Braxton Rowley, Coronado volleyball: Helped lead his team to a regional title and a national top-30 ranking as one of the key players.
• Logan Scott, Faith Lutheran, cross country and track: Won the state championship in cross country in the fall and took home gold medals in three more events at the state track meet
• CJ Shaw, Mojave basketball: Won the Class 4A Player of the Year award as a sophomore after leading the Rattlers to a second straight state championship with averages of 26 points, six rebounds, four assists and four steals per game.
• Melvin Whitehead, Liberty wrestling and football:A finalist in this category for the second straight year after compiling a 106-1 record through two wrestling seasons and finishing fourth at nationals.
This story appeared in Las Vegas Weekly.