Ten Coahoma Early College High School football players were recognized by their peers for their performances during the 2019 football season and two of them received special honors.
Junior defensive back Kendrick Honeycutt earned a spot on the Class 3A All-State second team with 24 tackles, five interceptions and seven pass deflections. He also played wide receiver. Senior Chris Russell was Region 3-3A special teams MVP with 1,457 all-purpose yards. He was a punter, punt and kick returner, quarterback, running back and safety. He finished with three rushing touchdowns, one punt return touchdown, one interception for a touchdown and one receiving touchdown. He finished with two total interceptions.
The rest of the honorees were won All-District honors on the Region 3-3A Super 22 team.
This was the first time the Tigers made the playoffs during coach Jeremiah Brassell’s four-year tenure and athletes were rewarded.
“Overall, they’re two great guys and they both had big years,” Brassell said. “They both helped us succeed this year. With Honeycutt, it was a shocker, but I knew he had it in him because teams stopped throwing toward him.”
Brassell said opponents threw the ball away from Honeycutt.
“With Chris, he’s one that’s going to be missed next year,” Brassell said. “He was Mr. Everything for us. Wherever we needed him, he played and he’s one of those special kids when, no matter how tough things get, he will try to rise to the occasion.”
Honeycutt’s fondest memory came in the regular season finale in an 8-6 win at Ruleville Central to clinch a playoff berth. Late in the game, he believed he had an interception, but the official ruled the Ruleville player took the ball out of his hands and made the catch. Ruleville scored a touchdown on the drive, but Honeycutt intercepted the pass on the 2-point conversion attempt to secure the win.
“I wanted it, but I had to keep playing,” Honeycutt said. “I can’t tell the referees that I caught it. I can tell them that, but I can’t do anything about it.”
Russell will be playing in the All-American Bowl in McDonough, Ga., at noon Saturday. Coahoma Community College, Itawamba Community College, Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Ark., Mississippi Valley State University, McPherson College in McPherson, Kan., and Grandview College in Des Moines, Iowa are all considering signing him.
His best game was in a 56-40 home loss to Winona in a district game. He had 12 carries for 162 yards and two touchdowns. One of the scores was an 80-yard run.
“At first, coming into my senior year, I never really expected to play so many positions because I was so focused on just being a running back, but Coach Brassell ended up utilizing my talent realizing I’m really able to do a lot of things,” Russell said. “Being a punter, everything like that, playing on defense, both sides of the ball, it’s really helping my recruiting. It’s picked up a lot of attention from all kinds of scouts and schools. If I can’t do it on offense for them, I’ll take care of it on defense. Special teams just allow me to get more time on the field.”