Ronnie Cottrell: ‘(Deontae Lawson) Reminds Me of Derrick Brooks’
Former Florida State recruiting coordinator and Alabama assistant head coach and current head coach of the Class 4A Mobile Christian Panthers joined The Gary Harris Show to talk about his time in the college football with the Seminoles and the Crimson Tide and his recent player enrolled with the Tide, Deontae Lawson.
"(Lawson) came to Mobile Christian as a left-handed pitcher when he was in the 7th grade, he was just a great baseball player. He also played basketball, he played point guard on the basketball team. He reminds me a lot of a kid we had at Florida State named Derrick Brooks, he's one of the greatest of all time," said Cottrell.
"The reason he reminds me of him is the way he prepares to play the game, the way he studies the game, you can tell him easily one time and he can perform it. He's more athletic really than Derrick was. Derrick was not as big guy as he is but he will be one of the greatest, if he remains healthy, that plays because like you said he's so athletic, he's so instinctive and I would put him up there with him."
Lawson was rated the No. 2 recruit in the state of Alabama as a 4-star prospect. 247Sports ranked him as the No. 51 overall player in the 2021 class and the No. 7 overall linebacker.
He starred on both offense and defense for the 4A Mobile Christian Leopards. His senior year he helped the Leopards advance to the second round of the playoffs while playing linebacker, running back and wide receiver.
Brooks was recruited by Cottrell and played under him at Florida State from 1992-94. Brooks was a three-time all conference player and helped FSU win the 1993 national championship. In his two-time All-American career he finished with 274 tackles, 13 passes defended, 8.5 sacks, five interceptions, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. Brooks has his No. 10 jersey retired by the Seminoles.
Brooks was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 1993 and went on to play for 14 years in the NFL for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He is a Super Bowl winner, the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2002, an 11-time Pro Bowler, 5-time First Team All-Pro and in 2014 Brooks was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame.
Being compared to an NFL Hall of Famer presents high expectations for Lawson but the freshman has already shown he's ready to deliver. Lawson recorded four tackles, including one for a loss, with two pass breakups and a fumble recovery. After the game, he was named as one of nine recipients for the Ozzie Newsome Most Improved Freshman Award.
Alabama football camp gets underway on Aug. 5 2021 and Lawson will have his chance to impress the coaches even further and push for playing time.
You can listen to the entire interview by clicking the link above. The Gary Harris Show airs weekdays from 9-11:00 a.m. CT and can be heard by downloading our free app.
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