Max Beati battled as quarterback E.J. Perry IV tried to march Andover down the field against rival Central Catholic.
Drive after drive, Beati trotted onto the turf, got in his stance and made sure his quarterback stayed upright long enough to make a play.
He had no idea that he had suffered a broken tibia bone in his left leg midway through the first half.
“It was Central and I was just too amped up during the game,” said Beati. “After the game I could definitely feel it.”
The injury kept Beati out the remainder of last season, the second injury which forced him to miss sinifigant time, after a broken wrist his sophomore year.
But this year, now a senior, Beati is back at full strength, and he has quite literally been Andover’s biggest asset.
After all, you can't miss him.
Bigger than Gronk
Standing at a massive 6-foot-7 1/2 and 323 pounds, Beati is larger than many offensive lineman that start for the New England Patriots.
The massive Beati will lead Andover into battle on Saturday, when the Golden Warriors take on archrival Central Catholic at 2:30 p.m. at Haverhill High. The game was moved due to the damage to the Lawrence Stadium turf.
“I get my height from my mom’s side of the family,” said Beati. “My mom (Erica) is 5-foot-10, and my dad (Todd) is 6-foot. I started playing sports because of my dad. He played football at Trinity College (1983 grad).”
To give some perspective, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, if he were to stand next to Beati, comes up about one inch and 60 pounds short.
Andover head coach E.J. Perry III said, “That frame makes Max very interesting.”
Looking at the weigh-in results for every offensive linemen in the 2015 NFL draft combine, Beati would be second in height only to Trent Brown (6-foot-8) of Florida, and out of the 52 linemen in that combine only 14 weighed the same or more.
So, having a Division 1 caliber frame, what’s next?
“I haven’t decided on a college yet but I love football and want to continue to play,” said Beati. “But I’m also trying to find a nice academic school as well where I can study business and is relatively close to home.”
Beati has not gotten any offers from schools to play football, but has visited Michigan State and Penn State and is looking at Ivy League schools like Harvard, Yale and Princeton. He’s also hearing a lot from Holy Cross
He scored a 28 on his ACT ... the equivalent of a 1,970 on the SAT. That’s the 89th percentile.
“There are not a lot of metrics for linemen,” said Beati. “Receivers and running backs can put up the stats to get them noticed, but linemen can’t really do that. I think that makes it a little harder to get noticed.”
From the few metrics that linemen can be evaluated, and Perry believes Beati will get a school to bite on him.
“Max is not afraid of hard work,” said Perry. “He really dedicated himself this year to the weight room. His arms are so long and his legs are very strong, too. Plus you’re not going to find that frame in a lot of other places.
“He has all the attributes of a linemen, now it’s just finding a school that could use a tackle.”
With Beati’s size, it comes as no surprise that he is a handful on the basketball court.
Beati averaged 6.5 points per game for Andover, which lost in overtime in the Division 1 North quarterfinals to eventual state champion Cambridge Rindge and Latin.
“Max has soft hands and can finish around the basket,” said Andover basketball coach Dave Fazio. “He’s strong, which makes him hard to move and get around, and he has solid footwork for someone his size. He has the potential to play college basketball if he wanted to.”
Perry III has a unique perspective on Beati's recruiting practice.
While at Salem (N.H.) High, he coached future Michigan State football recruit Pete Clifford. Following Salem, Clifford went to Prep school before becoming an All-Big Ten lineman and playing on NFL practice squads.
From his 6-foot-7 frame to even the jersey number 74, Clifford and Beati share some uncanny similarities.
“Pete was considering St. A’s before going to Bridgton,” said Perry. “With his basketball, he is definitely similar to Max. Both can get up and down the court. Max maybe has a little more mobility, but they are very similar.”
As of right now Beati is not considering a year of prep, stating that he is, “Ready to move on to the next level.”
Only time will tell if Beati follows a similar path to Clifford, but Andover’s big man is confident he could help a college squad.
“Football definitely takes a toll on your body so I know I need to get stronger physically and mentally,” said Beati. “But I think I can bring a lot of leadership to a program and just be an all-around good teammate.”
Meet Big Max Beati
Height: 6-foot-7 1/2
Shoe Size: 17
Birth Height/Weight: 2-feet/11-pounds
Fun Fact: Beati was Andover’s prom king.
If you want to see Andover linemen Max Beati in action, the 6-foot-7 1/2 and 323-pound senior has multiple very well made highlight tapes online. Search “Max Beati Andover,” and click on the “Hudl” link.