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Athlete of the Week – Antonio Leavy

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ROCKFORD (WREX) — The Jefferson boys basketball team is on fire this season, and a big part of that comes from the contribution of Antonio Leavy who's averaging 18 points and 14 rebounds per game.

"The first thing people see is obviously hit size, he's a giant," said John Rossato, the boys head basketball coach for the J-Hawks. "But I think the more people see him play, they see the footwork, the hands. He's gotten better with his outside shot, 15 to 18 feet and he's even stretched things out and hit a couple threes this year too so while I like him down low, he's continuing to develop his game."

Known as "Big Tone", the six-foot-seven senior is looking to play basketball in college, meaning his senior season - in the middle of a pandemic - means even more to him.

"All I kept doing was smiling, just smiling and smiling," said Leavy. "I'm smiling right now just talking about it you know? It feels real good just to even hoop, just to play ball. Making sure my teammates are ready for every game, just be prepared, I'm just really happy."

It's not just basketball that makes Antonio tick.

"Comedy. I'm funny I'm real funny," said Leavy with a smile. "That's my favorite thing to do, make everybody laugh and make sure everybody got a smile on their face."

When asked about "Big Tone", Coach Rossato has a specific comparison.

"I always tell people if you watch The Blind Side with the lineman, he's that type of kid," said Rossato. "He's a giant on the outside but when you get to know him he's a great kid."

Antonio Leavy, hoping to help the J-Hawks to a NIC-10 title, while bringing some laughs along with it.

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Sam Knox

Sam joined the WREX news team in the Spring of 2020.

He graduated from Emerson College in May of 2020, just two days before moving to Rockford to take the job at WREX as a Weekend Sports Anchor/Reporter. He majored in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Sports Communication.

Sam is originally from Sturbridge, Massachusetts, and has been an avid sports fan his whole life. He played basketball and baseball in high school, and he went on to play collegiate baseball at Emerson.

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