Sports

Foster happy to let big boys handle first snaps

Lewisville's Dion Foster works out during practice for the Shrine Bowl.
Lewisville's Dion Foster works out during practice for the Shrine Bowl.

ROEBUCK -- Lewisville's Dion Foster admits that people see him as a little undersized for a defensive lineman.

He's 6-foot-4, weighs 235 pounds and is OK with his size.

"I've got speed and power," he said. "My best attribute is that."

Foster, who has an offer from Auburn, is on a star-studded defensive front. He's trying to steal time from guys like Byrnes' Everett Dawkins (a Florida State commitment) and Bamberg-Ehrhardt's DaQuan Bowers (a Clemson commitment).

Foster said he probably won't start Saturday and that could be a good thing.

"I'm kind of happy that they're in front of me," he said. "They can wear people down before I get in there."

• BLOWING OUT THE CANDLES -- No need to bring J.B. Shippy a present or cake on Saturday.

Sure, it's his 18th birthday, but the Gaffney linebacker, who will play for the South Carolina Shrine Bowl team that day, has another wish.

And it's one that no parent, grandparent or girlfriend can gift-wrap.

"I want to get an offer from a Division I school," he said with a smile following Wednesday morning's practice.

Shippy has done his part to earn that gift. He finished the season with 126 tackles, six sacks, one interception and three forced fumbles and is making some noise on Dorman High School's practice fields.

He might look a little small (5-foot-11, 208 pounds) compared to other players on the field, but he's always around the football and capable of making highlight-film quality plays.

Shippy has offers from Presbyterian, Liberty, Rutgers and S.C. State, along with getting interest from plenty of other schools.

Now, though, he wants to show the home crowd one last time what he can do.

"I definitely want to go out with a bang," he said. "You're going to be hearing No. 37 J.B. Shippy a lot."

That will be an excellent present for the South Carolina coaches and all Gaffney fans.

• KICK WITH ME -- Each Shrine Bowl team has one kicker. That can make for a long day.

So Eastside's Ryan Fowler and Casey Barth of John T. Hoggard High School have worked together this week.

"When you have one kicker you have to chase your own ball," said Fowler, who has committed to kick at Vanderbilt. "With two kickers you can kick back and forth with each other."

Barth and Fowler didn't just meet this week, as the kickers knew of each other from kicking camps that they've attended.

While their teammates have gone through drills on the two upper practice fields at Dorman, the two kickers have been on the lower field going through their own drills.

"It's been pretty fun," Barth said.

He's trying to catch the eyes of some other college recruiters. He has one offer -- from Air Force.

"I think I've showed what I can do," he said.

• INJURIES -- Central linebacker Carl Deason missed the afternoon practice after he injured his knee during the early morning workout.

Dillon's Damien Sowells missed some of the morning practice after he injured his ankle and iced it down, but was back during the afternoon practice.

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