The Asbury Park High School football team has taken a big hit.
Donte Abrams, who starred for the Blue Bishops last fall as a sophomore, has transferred to a Michigan high school, Asbury Park coach Tim Fosque said.
“He was our best returning player,” said Fosque, the Blue Bishops’ second-year coach.
Fosque said Abrams will live with his father.
“It was a family decision,” Fosque said.
Fosque said he learned of the decision in late May.
“Donte worked out with our team,” Fosque said. “Of course, when you lose your best player you are discouraged and heartbroken. He’s a great athlete and a great kid. He knows how to carry himself. I am sad to see him go, but by the same token, Michigan is a better opportunity for him. I am happy for him.”
Abrams last season made 26 tackles and intercepted two passes. He caught 10 passes for 132 yards, an average of 13.2 yards per catch. He caught two touchdown passes. He rushed for 119 yards and one touchdown on 11 carries.
Abrams played cornerback and slot receiver and returned punts and kickoffs last season. The Blue Bishops went 6-4 overall, including 3-2 in Shore Conference Class B Central in which they tied Keyport and Point Pleasant Beach for second place. Asbury Park qualified for the NJSIAA playoffs.
“This year, we planned to play him at slot receiver and strong safety and on our special teams,” Fosque said. “He was never going to come off the field. He was a kid who did not want to come off the field.”
Fosque said Abrams’ name is on the list of several major colleges.
“You name it,” Fosque said. “Notre Dame, Syracuse, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Temple and Rutgers have visited him. He’s being recruited as a strong safety.”