GREENVILLE, NC (WITN) — Parrott Academy Football won the NISAA 8-Man State Title Friday night. It is their second championship in the past three seasons.
Running back and linebacker Ashton Brinson was their all-around senior leader that year. He put the run in the Patriots title run.
We’re featuring him in this week’s Pepsi Sports Spotlight.
“I played almost every position on the line,” says Parrott Academy senior Ashton Brinson, “I was always 5 pounds over the weight limit. Had the little stripe on my helmet. “
For four seasons, Parrott Academy’s Ashton Brinson made a lasting impression on the Patriots.
“In his freshman year we saw that he was a little bit different,” says Matt Beaman, head coach at Parrott Academy. “We brought him to the university. He started in the 2019 state championship game when a kid went down at the linebacker.
“A bit nerve-wracking, you know, going from JV year to varsity play,” says Brinson, “It was like you just had to do it. You just have to play scared.”
As Brinson grew, he took what he learned as a lineman and began following them out of the backfield.
“We knew he was going to be a good running back,” says Beaman, “but we didn’t know he was going to be that type of player.”
“Playing from that position and blocking for a true running back and then becoming a running back is a sense of respect,” says Brinson, “Every time I’ve run a ball or scored a touchdown, say it I thank those guys, you guys did great or whatever.”
Ashton had an incredible senior season.
“I don’t think there’s a boy in the state who’s put on 2,500 yards and 150+ tackles,” says Beaman, “he’s a special player.”
2800+ yards total, mostly on the ground. He ran in 31 touchdowns, he had 35 total touchdowns
“Owns the all-time record for total yards in a season. He surpassed Davis Basden,” says Beaman.
Brinson’s senior season ended in two races and a throw for a touchdown in the state title game.
“I never thought I would do that. The only position I haven’t played is quarterback. I played everyone else,” says Brinson.
Injuries were the only thing that could stop Ashton this fall. He had to watch his team win the state title.
“Knowing that they were standing behind me and sitting there and watching them play. A lot of them came up to me and said we were going to win for you, you brought us here,” says Ashton, “there’s no better feeling than when these guys show up and tell you and actually win it for you.”
A state title to wrap up his senior season. A team like Brinson decided to work harder than everyone else to be the best.
“That’s what we attract hard,” says Brinson, “hard work beats talent and it pays off and it does.”
Ashton is currently attending college for educational purposes. He hasn’t ruled out playing college sports if given the opportunity to play.
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