Bluffton defensive end KJ Ford is a player on the rise. The 6-1, 280-pounder is the defensive leader of the Bobcats.
Ford was in on 61 tackles last season, including 42 solo tackles in helping the Bobcats to an 11-3 record. Coach Ken Cribb thinks Ford has a great deal of potential and explains why, "One is experience. He's been with me since the 9th grade, so four years with us and real excited. Three years starting experience. His strength is phenomenal but his speed for his size is his best strength."
Ford added, "Defense wins games, you know. That's a big part of our team, our defense. We're strong, we're fast, we like to get after the ball."
Ford loves to be able to put pressure on the opposing quarterbacks and getting sacks makes his day, "It's just a good feeling, you know, just getting back there and sacking him."
Do you sometimes see after you've been around them, maybe got some pressure on them, maybe a little fear in their eyes? "Yes, sir, I do. It feels good to know that he's watching me now."
Coach Cribb explains that he has been move outside in the defensive line, "He's real excited right now because we've moved him from nose guard to defensive end because he is so quick. I'm sure he's licking his chops waiting for this first game to get here to show what he can do."
Ford's top picks to play college football are North Carolina State and Florida State where he would major in business. What factor does he think will make up his mind for him, "Whichever school shows me the most interest. Whichever place I can feel like I belong there and I can grow and become a better player."
Cribb views Ford's future this way, "He's a defensive tackle, nose guard type as the division one level. I think this is going to showcase him a lot more and serve our purposes and that's our major concern."
The Bobcats open the season on August 23rd when they visit Whale Branch.