Players of the Pine Belt: South Jones DE Sawyer Griffith

Published: Jul. 26, 2021 at 12:45 PM CDT
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ELLISVILLE, Miss. (WDAM) - When Todd Breland started looking for leaders on the South Jones High School football team, he very quickly found senior defensive end Sawyer Griffith.

“[Griffith]’s going to get down in those trenches,” Breland said. “He’s going to get muddy, bloody, fight, scratch and claw.”

The 6-foot, 180-pound Griffith said he’s most comfortable in the middle of it all.

“I like the contact and how gritty it is,” Griffith said. “It takes a lot of work and I like it a lot.”

Breland will look to Griffith to rally the Braves both on and off the field this season.

“He shows up to work every day,” Breland said. “He’s one of the most dedicated athletes I’ve ever been around.

“He’s a quiet leader but he’s leading in everything he does the moment he walks in the building until the moment he leaves.”

The former long-time Laurel head coach, Breland enters his second season at South Jones, hoping to build off 2020′s playoff berth amid the craziness that came with COVID-19.

“When you end with success, you try to build off it,” Breland said. “We had a great spring, a great spring game and we’re trying to carry that into the summer and into the fall.”

Griffith said he and his teammates feel like they are ahead of last year’s COVID-19 curve.

“With us having a year together now and having some time that’s been normal, we’ve learned to know each other a little more,” Griffith said. “We’ve grown stronger mentally and physically. Hopefully, it pays off soon.”

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