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Byron Bacon: “The Vertical Intimidator”

By Barry Every
SouthernPigskin.com
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As a sophomore Bacon racked up 53 tackles, seven PBU’s, one INT and one FR, earning Region 2-AAAAAA Honorable Mention for his defensive exploits.

Red Terror Football has been the dominant force in Southeast Georgia since the arrival of Head Coach Rocky Hidalgo. Last year Brunswick (Ga.) Glynn Academy came up one game short of making the GHSA-AAAAAA State Finals for the second time in three seasons. During Coach Hidalgo’s four years at the helm of Terror Football he has led them to the State Quarterfinals or beyond every season.

So you can imagine that this trend is expected to continue in 2018. One returning starter that Coach Hidalgo will be counting heavily on is 6-foot, 180-pound safety Byron Bacon. As a sophomore Bacon racked up 53 tackles, seven PBU’s, one INT and one FR, earning Region 2-AAAAAA Honorable Mention for his defensive exploits.

“This is a guy that is a lot of fun to coach; he has a dynamic personality and is really starting to grow as a leader,” Hidalgo said. “He brings a lot of energy to the field reminding me of former Red Terror and current Miami Hurricane Deejay Dallas. Bacon has really physically developed so much in the last year, and watching this progress is really what makes coaching so enjoyable.”

Bacon has had a busy spring taking part in the Greed-D-Boyz 7-on-7 traveling team, where he represents both the U18 team and the nationally ranked U15 squad. Yep, he is already a dominant force at the varsity level, and still just 15-years old.

He took part in the MVP Camp held at Valdosta (Ga.) Lowndes finishing in the top three at his position.  And then there was his stellar showing at the annual ESPFC Camp held at Kingsland (Ga.) Camden County.  His performance was so dominant he was earned DB MVP. But many who attended felt Bacon was the top potential prospect at the camp based on his showing that day.

Bacon also takes part in the Red Terror Track Program where he participates in the 4X100-meters, 400-meters and occasionally the 200-meters. The two-sport star is stout in the classroom as well, boasting a 3.4 overall GPA with plans of taking the ACT during his junior year season.

One doesn’t gain the confidence of a hard hitting defensive difference maker without putting time into the weight program.  At this time Bacon possesses a max bench press of 280-pounds with a 415-pound squat. Not shabby for a 15-year old defensive back.

“He is so much more confident as a player from a year ago, this is a bigtime player that will eventually have big offers,” Hidalgo said. “He can split a guy in half on the football field; he is simply a safety that will set the tone stopping the vertical passing game.”

Though he is patiently awaiting his first offer several major colleges are showing keen interest. Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Nebraska, North Carolina, Western Kentucky and Stanford have all inquired about his talents. Three schools he admits to be infatuated with are Clemson, Georgia and Ohio State. At this time he plans on attending college one-day camps as Clemson and North Carolina.

Right now it’s a revolving door of college coaches coming through Brunswick to eye the talent at Glynn Academy. The Terrors will be in spring ball through the 18th of May where they culminate their efforts with a final inter-squad scrimmage.

“I have to continue to work on my craft as a defensive back,” Bacon said. “Everyone knows I’m a hitter, but I lacked great cover skills as a sophomore in my opinion. I must focus on my hips and footwork while also being a good leader for my team.”

But, it’s more than individual improvement that motivates Bacon on the gridiron. It’s about winning a State Championship.

“One of my main responsibilities is making sure everyone is playing up to our standards,” Bacon said. “Everyone has to know their assignment on every play, so taking a leadership role and helping the secondary line up properly is something I will be ultimately responsible for this coming season.”

Also high on Bacon’s list is continuing the Golden Isles dominance over crosstown rival Brunswick, something the Terrors have accomplished each of the last four seasons.

“I just love how the whole city packs the stadium for that game, it’s just crazy on that night,” Bacon said. “This past season we were the underdog going into the game, at least according to some. In the end we were victorious because we knew what it took to win, and that was hard work and minimizing mistakes.”

College coaches looking for secondary personnel that strike with reckless abandon need to head to Brunswick, Georgia.  Bacon is very similar in size and ability to 2019 Savannah (Ga.) Benedictine football star Jakeen Harris. Harris currently has double digit FBS offers, at this time next year I expect similar fanfare for Bacon.

And for those salivating for the Battle of Brunswick, mark your calendars for October, 19 as Bacon and his Red Terrors teammates attempt to make the Pirates walk-the-plank for a fifth consecutive time.