Ballin’ Beyond Rangeview


By Javon Harris, Sports Editor

From the valedictorians to the Teachers of the Year, Rangeview High School has always produced successful people. Often times though, the all-state athletes that journey through Rangeview have set out to be successful as well.

Jaleel Awini is just one of many successful athletes that have gone on to play at the colligate level. Awini also attended Rangeview High School where he was a four sport athlete, participating football, track, basketball, and even baseball, but the most important sport to Jaleel was football. Back in 2011 when Awini started his senior year campaign as starting Quarterback, he emerged as a superstar, leading the Raiders to an elite eight playoff game and even gaining Gatorade Player of the year. (The Award given to the most outstanding athlete in Colorado)

All of Jaleel Awini’s success came through these very same halls of RHS where Awini said, “I didn’t have the easiest time at Rangeview, especially with the coaches…but that helped me handle adversity.” Awini was originally enrolled at the Air Force Academy but was later dismissed due to personal reasons.

“Being dismissed from the Air Force was very tough for me and my family but I’ve been through tough times before at Rangeview so I was used to adversity before,” said Awini, “I can’t thank RHS coaches enough for pushing me and never making things easy. It helped me take responsibility for my actions and keep some integrity.”

Fighting the battles of adversity and gruesome linebackers, Awini still managed to push through and continue succeeding, even at the Division 1 level. After being dismissed from the Air Force Academy, Awini later transferred to Colorado University at Boulder where he currently plays on the football team.

Making the jump from High School ball and High School life to that of College is a major difference. “It was a rude awakening,” said Awini, “I wasn’t used to the military lifestyle and it was tough not being able to do things my friends were doing at other schools but now, at CU, I have a lot more freedom. College as a whole, you don’t have your Dad or Mom anymore so you have to be able to grow up and be responsible for getting what you need done and on time. As for football, it’s such a big difference. It’s a job in College as opposed to an activity in High School. Football is very demanding in college, you also have to be a student of the game by watching film and getting your body right in the weight room.”

With the mindset and support system of many good friends and old teachers, Awini hopes to continue his success at CU and play Quarterback next year, which will be his senior year campaign once again; the only difference this time is the school name on the jersey.

From football athletes to basketball athletes, Jeremiah Paige and Jeffrey Solarin both have gone through Rangeview High School and are currently continuing that success at the collegiate level.  Solarin, who attends Idaho State University and plays basketball talked about his RHS life, “My journey through RHS was a good one. It had a lasting impact on my life, taught me a good work ethic which I still use today.”

Paige, unlike Awini and Solarin, said that his journey was “difficult” and that it “didn’t prepare me enough for college but I won’t complain. If it wasn’t for Coach Palmer, Sobes, and Coach Carabello I wouldn’t be where I am right now.”

Having a different experience through Rangeview has had a lasting effect on Paige as he attends Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado and is on the basketball team. Jeremiah was one of the most talented basketball athletes to ever come to Rangeview; he broke records such as most points in a career, most blocks in a career, most steals in a career and even most points in a game with 52.

With an extraordinary performance like this in high school, it’s no surprise that when Paige got to CSU he said, “College ball is so different. It’s faster, stronger, and you have to be mentally ready every day.” As Jeremiah embarks on his journey through CSU now, Solarin is eyeing his senior year campaign at ISU.

Jeffery was no short of brilliant, while wearing the jersey number 32 for the Raiders, but it also seemed a bit easy to him, as he broke the career rebounds record and was an All-State performer. Now, as he hopes to continue his success at the D1 level, he has a different outlook on basketball. “The College game is a lot harder, faster and more physical,” said Solarin. “I have to work one hundred times harder on the court since I am undersized for my position to accomplish what I want.”

The Rangeveiw Alumnis in Awini, Paige, and Solarin all represent Rangeview athletics in a very good way. As they all continue to succeed at the next level, the Raider community will be supporting them every single time.

“I love that they are successful because I started off as their coach and now I can be a fan of these athletes,” Palmer said. “It allows me to watch and see how their careers play out.”