MILLEDGEVILLE — It is rare that players on the offensive and defensive line get recognized, but Georgia Military Prep School’s Parker Williams showed it is possible with a standout performance in the team’s 21-8 win over Warren County last week. His performance earned him U-R Athlete of the Week honors.
Williams recorded eight tackles in the contest, including four for a loss of yards and a half sack.
“He’s just one of those guys you really enjoy coaching,” Steven Simpson, head coach, said. “He’s just one of those guys you want on your team. He works hard every day — when he’s between those white lines he’s full force.”
Growing up around the game, Williams has gathered a lot of his football knowledge from his dad, Bert Williams, which he believes is an important asset as a high school player.
“I’ve grown up with football. Growing up and going to practice with my dad and seeing how excited he is with the players — as I’ve grown up being exposed to that, I’ve learned an abundance of knowledge from him, and for him to be able to help me play is a big deal,” Williams said. “Knowing about the game is really important. If you don’t know where you’re going on the offensive or defensive line you’re kind of useless.
The junior admits having an idea of what is going on during the game is crucial to being a successful player.
“You’ve got to recognize the defense when you’re on offense,” he said. “Basically just recognizing formations is key to being a football player.”
Knowing and understanding football has helped Williams since his freshman season with the Bulldogs, as Simpson suggests that the young lineman is fundamentally sound.
“It’s pretty obvious that he’s been around the game for a long time with his dad coaching the college team; he has a very high football IQ. The biggest thing is, Parker’s always been one of the bigger body kids, but his understanding of the game allows him to play in some situations where other kids might not have the understanding to play in those situations,” Simpson said. “He’s played a tremendous amount to still be a young player; because, he’s very fundamentally sound and he’s continuously working to better those fundamentals. Parker’s also developed into one of our leaders.”
The Bulldogs have relied heavily on Williams’ fundamentals this season, as they have competed against some of the best teams in the state.
“Defensively, our defensive line is our strength. We rely on those guys to control the run game. I tell them every week that they have to be successful for us to be successful,” Simpson said. “Our defensive line takes pride in trying to dominate a game, and they generally do a pretty good job of it.”
Williams and the GMC Prep line plan to continue to carry the Bulldogs this season, with hopes of making it to the postseason.
“Our team has a great goal of getting to the post season real soon,” he said. “We’re still very optimistic about our chances.”
Though, Williams was named with the Athlete of the Week honor, he admits it was a team effort last week.
“Being selected as a nominee was really cool because that’s never happened to me. Normally the people who get selected are pretty good, because I never think of myself as being really good,” he said. “I couldn’t do it without my teammates. Being a part of this team is awesome, because I wouldn’t trade these guys and these coaches for the world.”