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North Hall's Kevin Rochester 'honored' to be finalist for Atlanta Falcons High School Man of the Year
Banquet held Monday night at Mercedes Benz Stadium
Kevin Rochester
North Hall senior Kevin Rochester is shown Monday at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Photo courtesy David Bishop

Kevin Rochester is finishing his football career with an amazing honor. 

On Monday, the accomplished senior North Hall running back is one of 10 finalists who will be on hand at Mercedes Benz Stadium as the Atlanta Falcons award its High School Football Man of the Year. 

In 2022, Rochester ran for 1,526 yards and 17 touchdowns for the Trojans. 

“This is such an honor,” Rochester said. “It’s very humbling.”

Rochester got a glowing nomination from his coach David Bishop, who stepped down after the 2021 season. 

“Kevin’s one of the nicest young men I’ve been able to coach,” said Bishop. “I’ve never seen him have a bad day. His personality is infectious.”

Rochester was informed he was a finalist for the honor in December. 

Adding suspense to the moment, Rochester was called into Bishop’s office and was told to get his parents on the phone to share some news. 

Not knowing if it was good or bad news, Rochester was worried that he was about to be punished for something, even though his playing career was already finished. 

However, the message from Bishop was one for the entire family to celebrate. 

Rochester said his mother, Alana, had the most excited response to the coach’s message. 

Even with all of his success on the football field, Rochester doesn’t have any plans to play at the next level. 

Instead, he’s going to begin his studies at Auburn University in pursuit of a degree in civil engineering. 

Rochester’s grandfather, Keith, and his brother Dale founded the local company Rochester and Associates in 1966. 

Kevin’s father, Brian, rejoined the company in 1987, according to its website. 

As a senior, Rochester was the catalyst for the Trojans’ offense. 

He was also a vocal leader, regularly leading the Trojans in prayer, Bishop said. 

His high school career started on a promising note his freshman season. 

It had everything to do with what he was willing to do after practice. 

A competitive paddler with the Lanier Canoe & Kayak Club, Rochester was afforded the opportunity his ninth-grade year to take part in a national Junior Regatta. 

However, he would have to miss time away from the football field. 

Bishop’s one stipulation was that Rochester would have to run every day after practice, once he returned: a rule he had for any player to miss time during the season. 

Once Rochester returned, sometimes his coaches forgot he was supposed to be running after practice. 

That’s when the freshman, who was not a part of the varsity game plan, stepped in to remind his coaches of what he had to do. 

“Kevin never complained once about having to run,” Bishop said. 

Rochester is not the only finalist from Hall County for Atlanta Falcons High School Man of the Year Award. 

On Nov. 17, West Hall’s Nick Sturm, who is signed with West Georgia, was honored on the field before the Atlanta Falcons took on the New England Patriots. 

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