Venice High’s Langston Provitt stars in three major team sports.
By Kim Hackett | Photography by Armando Solares
THE LAST PLACE TO LOOK for Langston Provitt in a football stadium is on the sidelines.
There he is, breaking up a pass as the leader of Venice High School’s defensive backfield. No, that’s him, dodging tacklers on a kick return. The next play, he’s taking snaps at quarterback.
And for Provitt, a 17-year-old senior, the multiple roles for Venice’s state-ranked football team are just the start.
Defying conventional wisdom that top athletes should focus on a single sport, Provitt has changed with the seasons, going from football to the starting line-up of Venice’s basketball team and then to outfield on the Indians’ champion baseball squad. He’s believed to be the only male athlete in Sarasota and Manatee counties to start in all three of the major team sports in recent years.
“He is a great athlete with a great attitude,” says head football coach John Peacock. “He is one of the best players in the state of Florida.” Baseball coach Craig Faulkner calls Provitt a talented outfielder who is “single-minded and focused. He is always a positive force, works extremely hard—and people follow him.” The nationally ranked baseball team won the state championship in 2013 and came close in 2014.
Provitt’s training regimen rivals those of professional athletes. Last summer, Provitt arrived at the football fields at 6:45 a.m. for three-hour practices. Then he’d head home for a quick lunch and a shower and go to baseball practice. Often he would have to go straight from football to baseball to make tournaments.
This year, however, he’s taking a break from baseball because he’s had some problems with his knees and doesn’t want to risk injury while waiting for football scholarship offers. Coaches from Division 1 schools are recruiting him, including Purdue, Ohio State and the University of Central Florida. Ideally, he says, he would like to stay in Florida.
Recently, coaches across the state nominated Provitt as the 6A football player of the year.
He’s also a high achiever in other ways, earning a 4.2 grade point average and the respect of coaches and teammates. His football teammates named him one of the three captains last fall. And recently, coaches across the state nominated Provitt as the 6A football player of the year.
Provitt is humble when asked about his accomplishments, but admits the newspaper photos, TV interviews and coaches calling and texting are overwhelming at times.
“I try not to let it interfere with my focus,” Provitt says. “But I am thankful I’ve had these opportunities.”
Provitt, who hopes to go on to a career in sports management, wants to play both baseball and football in college.
“It’s tough in high school, even rarer in college,” says Faulkner. “If anyone can do it, he’d be the kid to do it.” |||