Drew Shelley became upset when Aynor’s spring game was cut short because of lightning.
“He’s like, ‘Coach, I just want to hit somebody,’” recalled Aynor coach Jason Allen. “I said, ‘Well son, it’s coming. You’ll get all the time you want.’ He’s just that kind of guy.”
For the Blue Jackets, Shelley is lightning on both sides of the ball. Whether he’s lined up at linebacker on defense or in multiple positions on offense, expect quickness and power.
“Drew’s the heart of the team,” Allen said. “He’s the guy. Everybody looks up to him. He’s just a warrior in the weight room. He just can’t wait to hit.”
Shelley’s skills fit well in the run-heavy style of the Blue Jacket offense. “I’m strong, physical, hard-nosed,” Shelley said. “I’m a grinder. I love to compete.”
In his third year with the varsity team, the senior played nose guard as a sophomore and defensive end as a junior before shifting to the linebacker’s spot on the defense this season.
His offensive role is even more varied.
“It’s hard to explain it,” Shelley said. “It’s wing, running back, fullback and tight end. Coach just calls me slash.”
Regardless of where his coach puts him, Shelley is ready to be on the field.
The Blue Jackets are coming off an 8-2 campaign that saw them reach the second round of the playoffs. And this year’s team has some options the 2018 squad did not.
“We’ve got athletes now,” Shelley said. “We’ve got kids that can run, catch. We may have the fastest kid on the field at all times.”
Although that speed gives the Blue Jackets more options, Shelley doesn’t expect the team to stray too far from the style he’s used to — and built for.
“Our biggest strength is our physicality,” he said.