UNION CITY -- James Logan High football star Warren Miles Long affected games in multiple ways this past season.

Offensively, the Northwestern-bound Long was a challenge to bring down. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound running back rushed for 1,700 yards, averaging 10.3 yards per carry, and scored 21 rushing touchdowns and three receiving touchdowns.

Defensively, it was a challenge to keep Long away from the ball carrier. The outside linebacker netted 86 tackles, four sacks, two interceptions and one defensive touchdown.

Most impressive, he was a clutch performer in big games. Long rushed for 766 yards and 11 touchdowns in four postseason games, and he rushed for more yards against De La Salle (122) than any other player this season.

For his many accomplishments, Long has been named the 2012 Bay Area News Group East Bay Player of the Year.

"He's got Division I offers on both sides of the ball," James Logan coach George Zuber said. "There are not many guys that have that ability on both sides of the ball."

Long said Northwestern recruited him as a running back, and he likes to play that position more. But he always thought it was normal to play defense as well as offense.

"My dad brought it to my attention that not a lot of players played both ways," Long said. "That's weird to me. If you are one of the best players on your team, why not help them out on the other side of the ball?"

Zuber can describe many attributes of Long, both offensively and defensively.


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"He has a phenomenal ability to make players miss, yet he will power right through you also. You see one or the other usually," Zuber said about Long's offensive talent. "He is a phenomenal outside linebacker. He's got that center of gravity that prevents him from being pushed back. ... To me, he's the best outside linebacker I've seen in a very long time."

Long gained 45 percent of his season rushing total in his four-game postseason, an eye-opening percentage. The Colts (12-2) reached the North Coast Section Division I title game, where Long earned his 122 yards on 18 carries against the Spartans, scoring on a 38-yard run.

"When you are an athlete, you know when to turn it on," said Long, who also received 41 percent of his season's rushing attempts in the postseason. He was limited to fewer than 10 carries in six lopsided regular-season wins.

Long certainly knows how to make an impact on the football field.