berkeley

Berkeley High School had six football players sign on Wednesday. Back row L to R: Keshawn Wicks (signed in December), Steele Judy, coach randy Robinson, David Martin and Dervon Pesnel. Seated L to R: Tre Morrison, DJ Chisolm and Eric Tuttle. David Shelton/Special to The Post and Courier 

As one of the top pass-catching tandems in the Lowcountry over the last two years, Berkeley High School's DJ Chisolm and Dervon Pesnell created nightmare scenarios for opposing defensive coordinators.

Now the football players will take their respective games to the next level, each signing scholarship papers on Wednesday as part of the 2019 National Signing Day ceremonies around the country.

Chisolm, the 2018-19 Lowcountry athlete of the year and a two-time All-Lowcountry first-team selection in football, is taking his talents to Middle Tennessee State. He originally was an early commitment to East Carolina but reopened his recruiting when ECU had a change in coaching staffs.

“After I decommitted from East Carolina I slowed down and took my time,” said Chisolm, who caught 146 passes for 2,291 yards and 31 touchdowns, plus five touchdowns on kick returns, in his career. “I didn’t plan on committing on my visit to Middle Tennessee but once I got there, I was blown away. They care about academics more than anything. They have a 97 percent graduation rate. I want that, I need that.”

Chisolm, at 5-9, 160 pounds, was used in several ways offensively, particularly in the short passing game, while  Pesnell, at 6-4, was the downfield threat for the Stags.  Pesnell finished with 91 career catches for 1,372 yards and 20 touchdowns.

“DJ set school records as a junior in receptions, receiving yards and touchdowns and his numbers were a little less this season because of the emergence of Dervon,” Berkeley coach Randy Robinson said. “DJ drew a lot of double-teams this year and Dervon could win one-on-one anytime. It made for a lot of wins and a lot of fun. We have our work cut out for us replacing those two guys.”

Pesnell had several offers and even committed to Navy before changing his mind after a visit to Campbell.

“It’s great to know that I can go play a sport that I love at the next level. Everybody doesn’t get this opportunity,” Pesnell said. “I want to go up to Campbell and make the most of it. As soon as I got on their campus, I enjoyed my visit and they were very truthful about everything with me. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Also on Wednesday, First Baptist running back Michel Dukes made it official by signing with Clemson. He made his commitment on Saturday. First Baptist teammates Jackson Watson (The Citadel) and Xavion Washington (North Greenville) also signed on Wednesday.

Defensive back Tre Morrison signed with Wingate, joining three of the area’s top defensive players — Davon Gilmore (linebacker) of Fort Dorchester and Cole Phillips (linebacker) and Ben Mitchum (defensive tackle) of Summerville — as Wingate signees.

Wando linebacker Justin Pelic, an All-Lowcountry selection, accepted a preferred walk-on opportunity at the University of Florida. Oceanside Academy had six players sign on Wednesday.

Wednesday's Lowcountry football signings

WR Simms Bennett    Oceanside Collegiate    Wingate

TE Gibson Marsh    Oceanside Collegiate    Newberry

RB Zion Coker    Oceanside Collegiate    Erskine

RB Davon Stuckey    Oceanside Collegiate    Newberry

DB Dante Campbell    Oceanside Collegiate    Erskine

OL Donovan Green    Oceanside Collegiate    Itasca College

WR Walker Coleman    Porter-Gaud    Middlebury College

PK Jonathan Weitz    Porter-Gaud    Clemson

DE Tucker Rose    Wando    Franklin Pierce

OL Drake Peden    Wando    Erskine

LB Justin Pelic    Wando    Florida

PK Andrew Weil    Wando    North Carolina State

DB Huw Meredith    Wando    The Citadel

OL Jackson Pell    Ashley Ridge    Wofford

RB Nick Cunningham    Ashley Ridge    Limestone

LB Cole Phillips    Summerville    Wingate

WR Andre Banks    Summerville    Newberry

LB Colby Taylor    Summerville    Newberry

DL Ben Mitchum    Summerville    Wingate

LB Davon Gilmore    Fort Dorchester    Wingate

DB Kevon Gregory    Summerville    Albany State

LS Cole Collins    Summerville    Coastal Carolina

LB Jackson Watson    First Baptist    The Citadel

DE Xavion Washington    First Baptist    North Greenville

RB Michel Dukes    First Baptist    Clemson

WR Tyshon Richardson    Stall    Univ. of Charleston (WVa.)

WR DJ Chisolm    Berkeley    Middle Tennessee State

WR Dervon Pesnell    Berkeley    Campbell

LS Steele Judy    Berkeley    The Citadel

QB Eric Tuttle    Berkeley    North Greenville

DB Calantrae Morrison    Berkeley    Wingate

OL David Martin    Berkeley    S.C. State