Players, coaches recognized at annual football banquet
Coaches, players and family members gathered at the BHS gymnasium Monday night for the annual football banquet to recognize the accomplishments made by the team this season.
The evening began with guest speaker and former NFL, CFL and college football player Ray Drew.
Drew attended Thomas County Central High School, where he played football from 2007-2010. He then went on to play at University of Georgia, before signing with the Miami Dolphins in 2015. He has also been a member of the Cleveland Browns, Green Bay Packers and Carolina Panthers and Montreal Alouettes. He is now an entrepreneur and goes around telling his story to others.
Drew is a strong man of faith and told the players God had laid on his heart exactly what he wanted him to say.
Drew explained he was a from “a small, one-horse town.” He said there was nothing particularly special about him, but just because someone comes from somewhere small doesn’t mean they can’t do amazing things.
He said when he graduated he was ranked number one in the state, number two in his position and number three in the nation.
Among Drew’s many coaches, one always stands out in his mind. That coach is Tracy Rocker.
Drew said that Rocker always had the defensive line do a drill with the dummies. Before they would start, Rocker would take a piece of tape and stick it on the dummies. He would then tell the players that the piece of tape was their focus point. Once the focus point was found, he would then tell them to strike. After a series of strikes, he would then let the players finally engage before they would bring power.
Drew explained this series of drills applied not only during practice, but in life.
“I don’t know what your vision is in life, but whatever it is you have to find a focus point in it,” Drew said.
“Then you have to tap it, you can’t jump into your vision full force; you have to have the fundamentals first,” he reminded them. “If you don’t, when you go to strike, you’ll be off center.”
Once everyone has the fundamentals, they can bring the power and the Lord will do the rest, Drew said.
“The Lord will bless whatever you put your hands to,” Drew finished.
Following a round of applause, head coach Jeff Littleton began presenting players with awards.
The academic awards were presented first. The awards for highest cumulative GPA were presented to freshman Bradley Marshburn, sophomore Ahmari Borden, junior Octavius Green and senior Quayde Hawkins.
Awards were then given to Freshman Prime Players. Antavious Murphy, Thomas Akin, Cam Sanders and Keenan Phillips were presented with this award. JV Prime Players included Bo Smith, Amari Ross and Davayon Stroud.
Following this, awards were presented to Freshman Mr. Significant. Javon Cox, Travious Freeman, AJ Grant, Shedrick Kyles were all winners. JV players, Dariyon Smart, Devetress Green and Mason Bryant also took home the award.
Freshman winners for Mr. Consistent included Andrew Carnes and Carl Boldin, while JV Mr. Consistent went to Kooper Kearns and William Goodson.
No missed opportunity awards went to freshman Jamauri Williams and James Jackson, while JV players Peyton Edwards, Chase Parker and Devante Stepney took home awards for their grade level.
The Mr. Dependable award went to freshman Bradley Marshburn and JV players Parker Lowe and Jeffery Jones.
Littleton then introduced 2nd team All Region Winners, Ridge Baggett, Caleb Lewis, Zay Chrispen, Jeb Logue, William McCorkle, Simpson Bowles, Courtney Thomas, Jashon Mitchell, Tevon Moore, Trey Bouie and Nicholas Tyre.
The 1st team All Region Winners included, Monteric Robertson, Dontavious Broadnax, Zion Bouie, Jackson McCullough, Quayde Hawkins, Lawson Chandler, Tahari Tate and Rashad Broadnax.
Bearcat Team Awards were then handed out.
The Hard Hat Award was given to Lawson Chandler, Jackson McCullough, Tahari Tate, Braxton Johnson, Zay Chrispen, Quayde Hawkins, Simpson Bowles, Ridge Baggett and Rashad Broadnax.
The Breakout Award was presented to Blake Fagan, Devon Smart, Cason Thompson, William McCorkle, Alvin Parker, Dontavious Broadnax, Ahmari Borden, Tevon Moore, Octavius Green, Sesan Edwards, Nicholas Tyre, Cam Bennett, Courtney Thomas, Jashon Mitchell, Jeb Logue and Kenny Jackson.
Next, Littleton presented the Iron Man Award to Zion Bouie and Trey Bouie.
The Tommy Smith Hustle Award was given to William McCorkle, who demonstrated the same quality of character, leadership, academic achievement and hustle that Thomas Livingston Smith, Jr. demonstrated.
The final awards were the Bearcat Awards, which went to Rashad Broadnax, Quayde Hawkins, Lawson Chandler and Ridge Baggett.
Each class was then given their football certificate before the Bearcat Touchdown Club presented a special award to Littleton for being the winningest coach in Bearcat history.