Thursday, January 11, 2007
Echols signs with MemphisBy BARRY BURLESON
Terrence Echols’ dream carried him from a resurrected football program at Byhalia High School to Northwest Community College. Now it’s taking him to the University of Memphis.
Echols, a 6-3, 325-lb. offensive lineman, has signed a scholarship with the Tigers, head coach Tommy West recently announced.
“It’s something I’ve always dreamed of,” Echols said about playing major college football. “I hope it sets an example for other young people (at Byhalia High School). If you want to do it, you can. Set goals for yourself.”
Echols played for coach Gaylon Jones at BHS. Jones’ work with Echols started in the seventh grade when Jones moved to Byhalia to revive the football program after a 20-year hiatus.
The Indians started playing a varsity schedule in 2002. Echols, the team’s most valuable player, graduated in 2005 and signed with the Rangers that summer.
“He’s a hard worker, always giving it his all, both athletically and academically,” Coach Jones said.
Echols was a two-year starter at Northwest. The Rangers averaged 330 yards of total offense in 2006, which ranked third in Region 23. Echols was part of an offensive line gave up just 22 sacks last season. He also helped the Rangers average over 235 yards rushing per game which ranked second in the league. He was named North All-State as a lineman.
Echols graduated from Northwest in just a year and a half. He will be enrolled at the University of Memphis this month.
He was recruited by a host of colleges such as Houston, Alabama-Birmingham, Central Arkansas and Arkansas State.
“I really like Coach (Tommy) West, and I just fit in at Memphis,” Echols said. “Plus I wanted my family to get a chance to see me play - jst 45 minutes up the road.”
He credits his mother, Linda Echols Duncan, and his stepfather, Kenneth Duncan, for his success.
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