By Gabriel Stovall
McDONOUGH, Ga. — When it looked like former Ola football star Tre McBride was going to miss getting picked in the 2015 NFL Draft, his old athletic director and basketball coach wanted to take matters into his own hands.
He went to Twitter and tagged McBride in a message that pleaded with NFL teams to give a solid athlete and even more solid character guy a chance to get on a roster.
And then he had to delete it.
“No joke, as soon as I hit send, the joker got drafted,” Miller said Saturday night, just several hours after McBridge, the standout William & Mary wide receiver, was picked by the Tennessee Titans in the seventh round with the 245th pick.
And just in case someone missed it, Miller immediately took to Twitter with a different message:
TRE McBRIDE to the Titans!!!!!! @Uno_Dos_Tre3
— Curt Miller (@OLA_HIGH_AD) May 2, 2015
As for McBride, he was pretty matter-of-fact about things. Earlier when it looked as if being drafted would not be so, he allowed himself to take a glass-half-full approach: “I’m okay with whatever happens,” McBride said on the social media site. “I know I will make a roster one way or the other. On the bright side, many teams have called and offered PFA, so I’ll get an opportunity to choose where I want to play if I don’t get drafted.” But about an hour later, he changed his Twitter handle to “Pick 245″ and posted this:
I’m a Titan..let’s get it.
— Pick 245 (@Uno_Dos_Tre3) May 2, 2015
And Miller, who admittedly isn’t the biggest NFL Draft geek in the world, kept his attention steadily on the Draft ticker since Thursday when it all began.
“I’ve never really watched the draft, you know, other than the first round or so,” Miller said. “But this time I was glued to it the whole time. Tre was a good kid for us. He wasn’t just good for athletics. He was good for multiple areas of our school. He’s just a great ambassador and representative for Ola High School.”
In addition to starring in football, McBride was impactful on the last Ola boys basketball team that went to the state tournament. That 2009-10 was a team Miller coached. McBride also went to state as a track athlete at the school.
During his four years at Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) school William & Mary, McBride totaled 196 catches for 2653 yards and 19 total scores. During that time he had eight 100-yard games. His sophomore season in 2012 was his best statistically, as he had 55 grabs for 897 yards and 10 receiving touchdowns while averaging 16.3 yards per catch.
And as pretty as the stat sheet looked for him, Miller said the numbers only tell a sliver of the story of what makes McBride so special.
“This just shows what Tre has been doing really during his whole career,” Miller said. “He’s always been a smart kid. Always seemed to be intellectually a step above A lot of kids. What he was able to do on the field and off was huge. It’s just good to see a well-rounded kid excel athletically, academically, in fine arts. He’s just a dream.”
And his NFL Draft success now gives McBride a dream come true, while providing current Mustang student-athletes the chance to dream dreams of their own.
“The good thing about this is, a lot of schools in Georgia have seen multiple players go pro,” Miller said. “It’s good for Ola that finally you can see that, hey, you can go through our school and it can happen. It’s not going to be given to you though. Tre’s a good example. All the work he and his dad would do here during the summer, on breaks coming to the weight room. It isn’t just handed to you on a platter. You’ve gotta work for it, but it can be done.”
NORTH CLAYTON, GRIFFIN ALUMS GETS PICKED
Former Georgia Bulldogs linebacker and North Clayton alum Amarlo Herrera is on his way to the Indianapolis Colts, after getting selected in the sixth round. And the recruiting gurus at ESPN seemed to have favorable views on the Colts’ selection.
Here’s what Mike wells, ESPN reporter for the Indianapolis Colts wrote about the 6-foot-2, 231 pound linebacker:
“The addition of Herrera adds to the depth at inside linebacker. D’Qwell Jackson and Jerrell Freeman are the starters, but they’re thin at that position after that, The only other player at inside linebacker for the Colts is Henoc Muamba. Herrera is a tackling machine He had a team-high 115 tackles last season.”
Meanwhile, the Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots used the 253rd pick, their last, to choose Alabama defensive end Xzavier Dickson. The former Griffin Bears standout accumulated 14 sacks and 91 tackles, including 21 four losses during his four-year career with the Crimson Tide.