There’s fast, and then there’s Salvon Ahmed fast, said former Juanita High football head coach Lele Te’o.
“As soon as he got the ball, he was gone,” Te’o added.
From his days at Kamiakin Middle School to Juanita to the University of Washington, Ahmed has maintained that speed and grit on the gridiron and he’s now set for the NFL draft on April 23-25.
In a Jan. 3 Twitter post, Ahmed said that “after long hard talks with my family, coaches and close friends, I have decided to declare myself eligible for the 2020 NFL draft.”
In the post, he thanked his parents and coaches for supporting him, pushing him every day and molding him and his teammates into the best football players and men they could be.
To his teammates, Ahmed said: “The bond we have created throughout these 3 years has been something I will always cherish. The support and love we have all showed each other has helped me get to where I am today.”
Ahmed — a junior 5-foot-11, 196-pound running back — played his final game for UW by scoring two touchdowns in the Huskies’ 38-7 victory over Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl last month. He will forgo his final season of eligibility.
Te’o got to know Ahmed at Kamiakin as a seventh-grader and the pair would often discuss football, life and music during breaks from classes. Ahmed was mature beyond his years, Te’o said, adding that the youngster had goals to perform well in the classroom and on the football field. He especially aspired to earn Pac-12 scholarships, which he achieved.
At Juanita, Ahmed graduated with an accumulative grade-point average of 3.7, Te’o noted, and at UW, he earned several Pac-12 academic honors.
“I’m really excited to see him get after his dream,” said Te’o, adding that Ahmed’s family has kept him grounded and guided him along the path to success.
This season, he ran the ball 188 times for 1,020 yards and 11 touchdowns. During his three-year UW career, he toted the ball 353 times for 2,016 yards and 21 touchdowns.
“Can’t wait to see where this journey takes him. Couldn’t have asked for him to prepare any harder each week,” tweeted Keith Bhonapha, UW recruiting coordinator/running backs coach.
At Juanita, he played in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl following his senior season, during which he was named to the USA Today all-state team at defensive back. That year, he was named the 3A KingCo offensive most valuable player, playing in just six games due to an injury and rushing for 1,300 yards and 13 touchdowns. As a junior, he helped lead the Rebels to a 9-3 record and berth in the 3A state quarterfinals.
What Ahmed learned and achieved during his time at Kirkland schools and in the community has stuck with him throughout his UW years, Te’o said.
“Salvon was a kid that took Kirkland with him to UW,” Te’o added. “He’s such a positive role model for kids and adults in our neighborhood.”