It wasn't looking good for North Forrest Friday night. The Eagles trailed at home to Columbia 21-0.
Daylyn Croom had a message for his teammates at the half.
"Going into halftime I just told them keep their head high," Croom said. "I mean we did it before last year. We were down in a couple games. Came back..made it a close game. As we were coming out of half time I just told them keep fighting. Don't give up. Just everybody keep fighting."
Croom's message certainly made an impact as the Eagles got the 24-21 victory. The senior quarterback impacted the game not only with words but with action.
"Daylyn was a big part of that success on last Friday," Eagles coach Anthony Dillon said. "The guy actually threw a touchdown, he caught a touchdown and he ran for a touchdown. You don't see that done too many times in the game of football. That just lets you know what type of athlete he is and what he means to our team."
This all-around performance made it hard to deny Croom's being named our latest Mississippi Ag player of the week.
"That makes us feel real good," Dillon said. "It's exposure for our program and great recognition for our high school. That's what we want to exemplify. Just having great student athletes over here at North Forrest High School."
The leadership that Croom displayed last week shows the natural growth he experienced over the course of a year.
"I stepped up a lot," Croom said. "Last year I was more of the quiet guy because we had seniors. This year I understand that I had to step up because everybody look up to me. They look up to me to be the leader. To do the right things on and off the field in the class room. They look up to me as a leader."
What happened Friday night was the expectation heading into the season.
"Just to show that leadership and composure," he said. "We talked about that right before the season started. That's why he was selected as our pine belt player of the year. With his experience he means so much to this team. We expect him to be able to make audibles and checks, get people lined up, make great decision and distribute the football to the people.
Having won their first game of the season, the Eagles are focused on making another run to the playoffs. To make this happen You can be sure Croom will be making plays in many ways.
"Anything I can do to help my team," Croom said. "If coach tell me I gotta kick I'm going to kick. You tell me I gotta catch I'm going to catch. If I gotta throw I gotta throw. If I gotta run I gotta run. I just do what I gotta do to help my team get a win."