High School Sports

Former St. Martin star Donte Starks announces plans to return to the Coast

One of the top football prospects to play on the Coast in recent seasons is returning to the area after a short stint at a New Orleans area school.

Former St. Martin linebacker Donte Starks announced on Twitter that he is leaving John Ehret High School in Marrero, Louisiana, to enroll at Biloxi High School.

Starks tweeted Tuesday night that he was considering returning to Mississippi due to “unfortunate circumstances with the Jefferson Parish School Board.”

On Wednesday, he revealed his plans.

“Unfortunately, I will no longer be a student nor athlete anymore for the John Ehret Patriots,” Starks said in a statement. “I will be furthering my academics along with athletics at Biloxi High School. Thank you to all the people who supported me through this hard time these past few months.”

Biloxi coach Bobby Hall said he found out about Starks’ plans on Twitter just like everyone else.

“I’ve never talked to the kid in my life,” said Hall, who is entering his third season at Biloxi.

Hall said he will wait and see how things shake out in the coming days.

“I grew up a cowboy and we raised quarter horses and trained them,” Hall said. “I never brag on a horse until he’s dead. I don’t get too excited about anything until it happens. In this profession, you try to never get too high or too low. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, we’re going to have a good football team anyway. We’ll wait and see what happens.”

Starks, who is rated a 4-star prospect by Rivals.com, holds scholarship offers from Arkansas, Auburn, LSU, Florida State, Louisville, Oklahoma, Southern Miss and Tennessee.

The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Starks played the 2016 season at St. Martin, but transferred to John Ehret in January.

Starks registered 81 tackles and four sacks as a sophomore linebacker for the Yellow Jackets.

The John Ehret football program has endured a fair amount of drama in recent weeks with head coach Corey Lambert recently being relieved of his duties.

The New Orleans Advocate reported that part of the school's decision to fire Lambert was due to a review involving a pair of transfer students. One player was ruled eligible to compete while the other was ineligible to compete in any sports until Feb. 10, 2018.

Patrick Magee: 228-896-2333, @Patrick_Magee