Senior Linemen Lawson And Vaughn Lead Patriots In 2020
MADISON- The Bob Jones football program is undergoing a revamp of its place among the Class 7-A schools in North Alabama with a new coach and new ways of presenting the program to the Madison community. First-year head coach Kelvis White has called upon his senior leaders on both the offensive and defensive lines to help formulate what is expected to be a banner 2020 season among all the chaos of the coronavirus.
Offensive lineman Drew Lawson (6-2, 295, Sr.) and defensive lineman Brian Vaughn (6-3, 240, Sr.) are the unofficial commanders of the lines that are spearheading the punch needed to bring the Patriots back to prominence they missed after posting a 4-6 record one season ago.
“I like the idea of being a leader as I hold myself accountable to a higher level and I expected my teammates to do the same,” said Lawson, who was an All-State selection after last year’s season. “I lead by example. Not just on the field, but everywhere we are as a team.”
For Vaughn, who uses the nickname of B.J. within his teammates, hopes to stay in Alabama for college and continue to play football, but so far has received two offers from out-of-state schools- LaGrange out of Georgia and University of Pikeville located in Kentucky.
“I started playing football in the eighth grade at Liberty Middle School with the encouragement from my father,” said Vaughn, who started on the offensive line at Liberty and his freshman year at James Clemens High before crossing the line of scrimmage to the defense once arriving among the Patriots. “At defensive end I try and bring good energy I hope the rest of the team can feed off of. I feel I get off the ball quickly and I am very aggressive at point of contact.”
Vaughn has superior upper body strength as he is listed as tops on the team in both the bench press (345-pounds) and squat (515-pounds). He has strength in academics sporting a 3.6 grade point average and wants to pursue an education in either psychology or business. He’s also an award winning artist where as an elementary student painted a farm scene that won an art contest.
Lawson’s trek to football stardom includes being one of the best wrestlers in Alabama where he posted a 26-6 record last year for Bob Jones before his season was cut short due to a knee injury and subsequent surgery in early January. Prior to his junior season, Lawson won both the 285-pound Freestyle and Greco Style State Wrestling Championships.
He feels his work in the very discipline-strong sport of wrestling has helped him in football and being a leader among his senior class and the entire football team. Technical aspects of his work on the offensive line is where Lawson is most robust. In the summer of 2019 he attended the LeCharles Bentley High School Camp in Arizona. He also attended spring classes on line formulated by Bentley, who was a one-time NFL Player and winner of the Rimington Trophy for the country’s best center while playing at Ohio State.
“To beat me you have to be smarter,” added Lawson in his 11th season of football. “I feel I have a high football IQ as I seem to recognize everything while out on the field. I certainly won’t get beat by technique and strength.”
The 2020 season is already a different animal due to the current pandemic and numerous COVID-19 protocols set in place. The change in head coaches and much of the coaching staff also presents the Patriots with different challenges this season, but both Lawson and Vaughn know they must be leaders and help the entire team follow the new directions of the program.
“The entire coaching staff feels livelier than what we had before and I believe Coach White is bringing a new tradition to Bob Jones,” said Vaughn.
“We’re all excited about the season,” said Lawson, who carries a 3.7 grade point average and has had scholarships offers from both Birmingham Southern and University of Pikeville for football and a wrestling offer from Huntington College. “We have tons of excitement and new energy with Coach White and his staff. We know we’ll do better this year as our enthusiasm will carry through the season.”
Lawson hopes to earn a college degree in education and has dreams of becoming a teacher and coach and continue his role as a leader.