Samuels ready to contribute at Marshall

Published 2:30 pm Monday, July 2, 2012

Shawn Samuels

Former Bainbridge High School Bearcats first-team All-Region 1-AAAA defensive back and return specialist Shawn Samuels will see action this fall as a strong safety for the Marshall University Thundering Herd.

He plans to major in sports management, a degree also earned from Marshall by former Bearcat and Marshall defensive back Philip Gamble.

Samuels said Gamble, who is currently working on his master’s degree in sports management at Marshall, has been a great advisor to him. Marshall is located in Huntington, W. Va.

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“To have another former Bearcat like Phillip Gamble at Marshall with me is really special,” Samuels said, during a recent trip home to Bainbridge.

Samuels, son of the late Deloise Samuels and Stevie Connell, was a very versatile athlete during his Bainbridge High School years.

In addition to his outstanding efforts for coach Ed Pilcher’s Bearcats football team, he  was a sprinter on coach Larry Cosby’s 2010 State Class AAAA champion Bearcats track team and a center for coach Rickey McCullough’s Region 1-AAAA champion Bearcats basketball team.

As a Bearcats senior in 2010, Samuels, who made All-Area along with All-Region 1-AAAA, had 36 tackles, one interception and four pass breakups.

A redshirt freshman, Samuels is one of three southwest Georgia players on coach John “Doc” Holiday’s Thundering Herd roster. The others are freshman defensive lineman Jaquez Samuel and sophomore linebacker Jermaine Holmes, who both played for the Valdosta High School Wildcats.

Samuels says Bearcats strength and conditioning coach Kelvin Cochran was extremely helpful to him during his high school years.

Marshall, which is a member of Conference USA, will open their season, Wednesday, August 1, against their state rival, the West Virginia Mountaineers, in Morgantown, W. Va.