The path to becoming a Division 1 athlete in college football can be a challenging and grueling road. For Juco defensive end Brandon Lawless, the path to Morgantown was indeed a process. That process required a lot of patience, hard work, and dedication to potentially play Division 1 football.
The day has come and Brandon’s father, Charles Lawless III, couldn’t be prouder of what his son has accomplished, the road his son has taken to get where he is today, and the road that led Brandon to Morgantown.
“He has a lot of blood , sweat, and tears in his journey to get to this point. Brandon is a kid who has had to do things the hard way since day one, No stranger to hard work.”
The perfect definition of what it means to be a Mountaineer, Lawless should fit right in to a state that prides itself on blue collar work ethic. So, how did the Los Angeles Valley College defensive end get a nod from a school on the other side of the country?
“My head coach brought them out to watch me practice one day, I guess ever since then, me and the coaches developed a relationship.”
West Virginia assistant Bruce Tall was the coach to build the foundation of the relationship between Lawless and the WVU program. The relationship continues to grow, as Tall speaks with Lawless on a consistent basis.
“We talk on a weekly basis, not even about football sometimes, we will talk about just random things. He just always checks in with me.”
The 6″4, 260 pound defensive end did not receive many offers out of high school, which had a lot to do with Lawless still growing into his large frame. Lawless was just 16 years of age going into his senior year and a lot of college coaches looked at size instead of potential.
“I played the beginning half of my senior season at 16, turned 17 in late October. I was still competing at a high level, for being young, but I guess I was smaller, so a lot of college coaches didn’t want to take the chance.”
When the Mountaineers showed interest in Lawless, it seemed more colleges chose to take notice as well. Sometimes all it takes is a spark to start a wild fire and for Lawless it was no different.
“A lot of schools came in late, right when they (WVU) came in. Florida, Georgia would come to the school and look at me. Nebraska, Washington State, UCLA, schools like that.”
None of that mattered, as Lawless knew where he wanted to continue his collegiate career. The Mountaineers didn’t just show interest, Lawless felt like WVU believed in him.
“Them (WVU) believing in me and me building a great relationship, was just something I had to take.”
The outpour of support from Mountaineer fans has been wonderful for Lawless since his announcement that he would play for the Mountaineers. The California kid has seen a lot of activity on his Twitter account these days, 400 new followers and counting.
“They’ve been awesome.”
Lawless is set to join the Mountaineers this August, a late addition to the 2016 recruiting class and will have four years to play three. Keep an eye out for this kid, he should be something special up in Morgantown.
Listen to the interview in its entirety and listen to the Brandon Lowe Show live every weekday evening at 5 on AM 950 WBES Charleston. Entire episodes are also available online at 95thesportsfox.com and on your Tune In app.