MYRTLE BEACH —You can note the change in Wando’s offensive philosophy by examining the role of wide receiver Rudder Brown from his junior to senior season.
64th annual North-South Fact Box
North-South GameWhat: 64th annual high school football all-star gameWhen: 12:30 p.m., SaturdayWhere: Doug Shaw Stadium, Myrtle BeachTickets: $15 at the gate. Up to two children (under 7) admitted free with one adult ticket holder.Local playersMike Myers, DL Goose CreekJalen Stevens, LB Goose CreekShawn Peace, DL StratfordNoah Shuler, RB StratfordRudder Brown, WR WandoChuck Rouse, OL WandoC.J. Frazier, QB BlufftonMarquis Webb, WR BlufftonDillon Alford, OL GeorgetownAnthony Blair, DE GeorgetownDeAngelo Stephenson, RB Bishop EnglandDaitwan Commodore, RB Fort DorchesterAnthony Smalls, QB HanahanRoderick McCRay, DB TimberlandJerod Tucker, RB SummervilleJohnny Burch, DE St. John’s
He was named the team’s most valuable wide receiver as a junior because of his blocking ability. The Warriors’ attack was ground-oriented and his chances to make plays were limited.
Brown was selected to play in the 64th annual North-South all-star football game his senior season because of his pass-catching ability. The 6-4, 190-pounder had 51 receptions for 875 yards and 12 touchdowns.
“He really worked hard in the offseason,” Wando football coach Jimmy Noonan said. “We always knew he was sure-handed. But when it comes to high school football, you marry your capabilities with the schemes. We felt if we could complete 60 percent of our passes, we could avoid going three-and-out and keep our defense out of bad situations. We had a quarterback, Christian Hart, who completed 60 percent. We had three or four receivers who had good numbers, but Rudder was our most productive.”
Brown has spent the week in Myrtle Beach preparing for Saturday’s North-South game, which will be played at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at Doug Shaw Stadium.
“It’s a great honor to be here,” Brown said. “It’s exciting. There are a lot of great players up here and to be part of it is special.”
Brown helped the Warriors to a special season. The team set a school record with 10 victories and the community rallied behind their team.
“That was probably the best thing about the season,” Brown said. “We had the support. It was a great feeling to ride the bus to the stadium and see signs along the way. And then as we came down the street to the stadium, there were parents and fans holding signs. The bond we made with the community was great.”
The only disappointment was the 25-20 loss to White Knoll in the first round of the Class AAAA Division I playoffs.
“It took some of the shine off the season because we were expecting to go deep in the playoffs,” Brown said. “We just didn’t match up well because of the offense they ran. We weren’t used to the Wing-T offense they ran.”
Saturday, the South should come out throwing as they try to end a three-game losing streak against the North. Joining Hart are quarterbacks C.J. Frazier of Bluffton and Anthony Smalls of Hanahan.
Brown has been impressing college coaches all week. A coach from The Citadel watched him in drills Wednesday. Wofford and VMI have shown a lot of interest in Brown, and now Navy is showing interest.
“He shows the ability to play at the next level,” Noonan said. “He’s able to use his body to his advantage, and he has those long strides. He’s got deceptive speed. You can find him open and he gets behind people in the secondary. He has the size and ability to make plays.”
Follow Philip M. Bowman on Twitter: @pandcphil