ALBANY -- The knee injury might have slowed Monroe's Anthony Shurtan down, but he never stopped believing he would get a football scholarship to college.
That belief came to fruition on Monday in the Monroe High media center, where Shurtan -- amid family and friends -- signed a letter of intent to play football at Edward Waters College.
"I always thought I would get a scholarship, because of my grades and my talent,'' said Shurtan, who suffered a knee injury as a junior, but came back with a strong senior season, playing on both sides of the line for Monroe.
"He is such a hard worker, and he played on the offensive and defensive lines. Sometimes it was hard to get him out of the game,'' Monroe football coach Charles Truitt said. "He was a three-year starter and one of the cornerstones for our offensive and defensive lines.''
Shurtan also competed in the shot put and discus during track & field season, but his first love was football and he made the most of it.
"He got better every year, and he has a great upside,'' Truitt said. "Edward Waters is getting a good person and a good football player.''
Shurtan, 6-feet, 1 inch tall and 316 pounds had a big year playing both ways, but will concentrate on the offensive line in college.
"I expect him to start there the first year,'' Monroe offensive line coach Travis Lockhart said. "He can play guard for them. He's very smart and quick. He was second on the team in pancake blocks (behind Georgia Tech signee Bryan Chamberlain). He had over 30 pancakes, and he always graded out at 85 to 90. He is one of the hardest working kids I've ever been around. He will be missed.''
Shurtan had a couple of other offers, but he liked the size of the school at edward Waters, and it's not too far from home in Jacksonville, Fla.
"I likes the school and the size of the school,'' Shurtan said. "I didn't want a big school atmosphere. I wanted small classes. I didn't want to be just another student.
" I like the idea of small classes and getting more attention in class from (the professors). That's what I was looking for in a college atmosphere.''
Shurtan is serious in the classroom, where he has a 3.4 GPA.
He plans on majoring in mathematics, and said he has aspirations of becoming either a math teach or an engineer.
"This is something I have always wanted,'' Shurtan said. "When I got the knee injury I knew I would come back and have a good year as a senior.''