Spectrum Athlete Spotlight: Jamarion Parker

Published: Oct. 26, 2023 at 3:57 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - Jamarion Parker is a junior running back from Cardinal Ritter.

The four-star athlete is one of the top running backs in the nation and No. 2 in the state of Missouri, according to 24/7 Sports.

“It feels great,” Parker said. “I feel like it runs in me; it’s what I’m supposed to do. I’m supposed to show that I’m one of the best backs in the country.”

The six-foot 185 lbs back came to Cardinal Ritter and took off as a freshman, rushing for 243 yards and scoring four touchdowns, contributing towards leading his team to a district championship, earning over 12 offers, and earning First-Team All-District.

“I feel like we had great leaders to push me as I get older and help the underclassmen become one of the leaders when they get older,” Parker said.

Parker has been around the sport for a long time.

“Since I was young, I had big brothers playing it, so I was always around it. So I knew I was going to be good,” Parker said.

Near the end of his freshman year, Parker faced some adversity, including the lost of his brother who was a big role model to him. Parker also transferred schools and took a break from football during his sophomore year to focus on himself.

In 2023, Parker came back to Cardinal Ritter, being coached under Brennan Spain who’s been a big role model to him throughout his high school career.

“Off the field, I can say he made sure that I kept self-control, keep respect, made sure I carry myself as a young man,” Parker said. “I got plenty of role models who did that, but ever since my high school year, me playing for him, he made sure that I was good no matter what, he battled for me through anything, and just made sure that I was straight.”

“When you’re dealing with sports and everything, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.” Spain said. “So now he’s a junior, and the last two years, he’s definitely matured. He’s not the finished product yet, but he’s striding and heading in the right direction.”

This season, Parker came back to the team better than ever, rushing for 1,020 yards, scoring 11 touchdowns, and leading his team to 9-0 record.

“It feels great going back to an undefeated team. I knew we couldn’t be beat,” Parker said.

The power back also found a new college home, being verbally committed to the University of Arkansas.

“Arkansas built a bond with him, even during the tough times he endured last season. And he finally found somebody that truly loved him and was willing to help him, mold him, and shape him into a better student-athlete,” Spain said.

“I feel like it’s been a connection with them since my freshman year. Even when I wasn’t playing football they still made sure they kept in contact with me every time I went out there I loved the atmosphere,” Parker said. “It’s just the love out there, I love it.”

Parker looks to continue his run as one of the top players in the class of 2025 and also to be the best version of himself.