Bryan County High School’s Tommy Mikell Jr. played a lot of positions for the Redskins during his high school football career - guard, linebacker, defensive line, tight end and center.
He also played for a lot of coaches, but more on that in a minute.
As far as positions go, Mikell said he will stick to linebacker at LaGrange College, which is where he’s headed after a signing ceremony recently at BCHS.
And despite his lack of size, Mikell, who is 5-foot-9 and weighs about 200 pounds, had offers from Culver Stockton College in Missouri, Judson College in Alabama, and drew interest from Presentation College in South Dakota and Greenville University in Illinois.
In the end, proximity and a small campus won out. LaGrange College is about 229 miles from Pembroke, and has an enrollment of about 980 students.
“I chose LaGrange simply because it was closer to home and I liked the nice, small campus,” Mikell said. “I am going to major in sports management and minor in coaching, and I hope to become a coach for LaGrange after college so I can stay around football as long as possible.”
He’s certainly been around a lot of head coaches. Mikell’s class went through seven head coaches and “several staff changes,” during Mikell’s four years at BCHS.
That turnover made Mikell loyal to those he said were loyal to him.
“I will miss my teachers and coaches who I built a strong relationship with and who coached me up for this moment,” Mikell said, singling out coach Ron Flott, who “was my offensive line coach from ninth to 11th grade. He was one of the few coaches who stayed all four years I was in school, even though he couldn’t coach my senior year … Him staying means a ton.”
Unfailingly polite, Mikell also gave credit to coaches Mario Mincey and Cindy Bennett “for always being straight forward and honest with me,” he said, and then thanked his parents, Brandy and Jamie Mikell, “for always being there for me and for being my best friends.”