Gamble’s big day Saturday

Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Saturday was a big day for former Bainbridge High School Bearcat and current University of Georgia Bulldog linebacker Darryl Gamble.

Gamble, son of Tracey and Lamar Washington of Bainbridge and a redshirt sophomore arts and sciences major with the Bulldogs, had interception touchdown returns of 40 and 53 yards in the Bulldogs 52-38 Saturday Southeastern Conference (SEC) victory over the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge, La.

For his effort he was named SEC defensive player of the week.

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His statistics for the game and the season are extremely impressive.

The former Bearcat had 13 tackles Saturday. Through the Bulldogs first eight games, he has 45 tackles, 18 solo and 27 assisted. In addition, he has two tackles for a loss, one quarterback sack and two pass breakups. He has also forced the opposing quarterback to hurry his throw 13 times.

I feel privileged to have covered an athlete and person as outstanding as Darryl Gamble during his high school football and basketball careers.

His high school accomplishments on the field and court speak for themselves. Along with earning first-team All-Region 1AAAA honors in football and basketball, he was the Region 1AAAA sportswriters choice for Region football defensive player of the year in 2004.

The 2005-2006 BHS senior athlete of the year, Gamble blocked a school record six kicks as a senior for coach Greg Guy’s Bearcats. After the season he was named to The Atlanta Journal-Constitutions Super Southern 100 football team.

Also as a senior, he led coach Jeff Page’s Bearcats basketball team to the Elite 8 round of the state Class AAAA Basketball Tournament.

Prior to Saturday, his biggest play as a Bulldog probably came last season against the Vanderbilt University Commodores in Nashville, Tenn. With the Commodores driving for a possible winning touchdown, he came up to make a hit that forced a fumble, which the Bulldogs recovered at their own 10-yard line. They then drove down field to set up the game-winning field goal that started their six-game season ending winning streak.

Gamble, who is as good a young man as he is a football player, has made Bainbridge High School, his family, and Bainbridge and Decatur County proud. I’m sure he will have many more great days before his Bulldogs career is over.

Outstanding football players and young men run in the Gamble family.

Darryl’s older brother, Phillip Gamble, a former outstanding Bearcats running back, is a senior starting safety with the Marshall University Thundering Herd.