The 6-foot, 135-pound senior distance talent won the NXN Southeast Regional championship qualifier this past season, breaking the tape in 14:57.70. Only the second Georgia prep in history, male or female, to qualify for a national championship race—and the first since 1987—Blanks crossed the line 28th at the national NXN Final, falling 4.4 seconds shy of All-American status. He also became the state’s first runner to win the prestigious Great American Cross Country Festival, clocking a personal-best 5K time of 14:45.60 in the Race of Champions to finish 10 seconds ahead of his next-closest competitor. A two-time 1A Private state champion, a four-time All-State honoree and the 2019 Georgia Cross Country Coaches Association Runner of the Year, he set an all-class meet record at the GHSA State XC Championships, capturing the individual title in 15:33.32 and leading the Spartans to fifth-place as a team.
Blanks has maintained a 4.02 GPA in the classroom. He will attend Harvard University this fall, where he will run cross country as well as track and field.
A Model UN participant and co-founder of the school’s environmental club, Blanks coordinates weekend roadside and riverbank cleanups and helps lead trash collection efforts following home football games.