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Culbertson’s high motor helps him make tackles

Beneath Colby Culbertson’s skin beats a high-powered engine. The Brookhaven Academy senior plays defense with an intense passion for making tackles.

     Culbertson, a defensive end and linebacker for the Cougars, accounted for 10 tackles in BA’s 32-20 Friday night win at Bowling Green. That performance has earned him The DAILY LEADER’s Defensive Player of the Week recognition.

     “Colby’s motor never quits,” BA head coach Tripp McCarty noted. “That’s what makes him a good football player. He never gives up on a play.

     “He’s a very hard worker in practice,” McCarty added. “He’s a very good influence on our team.”

     Culbertson (5-10, 205) also starts at offensive guard for the Cougars (4-4). They celebrate Homecoming 2012 this week and host Columbia Academy for their first District 5-AA game of the season.

     “We have a challenge for homecoming,” said Culbertson. “Columbia is physical and fast.”

     Culbertson is the 17-year-old son of Jay and Deanna Culbertson. He has a  younger brother, Carter, who is a freshman defensive end.

     Born in Opp, Ala., Culbertson grew up in a family rooted to the Alabama Crimson Tide. His father graduated from Auburn. Opp is located in the southeastern corner of the state, just north of Marianna, Fla.

     Culbertson said he wears jersey No. 57 in honor of former Alabama standout Marcell Darius. “He was a big, intense defensive lineman who was  known for blowing up the backfield.”

     He has worn the number since his sophomore season when he played for former BA coach Herbert Davis. He said he enjoyed playing for Davis and McCarty.

     “Coach Herbert was pretty intense; like me,” said Culbertson. “I love playing for Coach McCarty, too. He’s a more laid back type of guy. He’s all business at practice and in games.”

     Asked about his positions on the team, Culbertson said, “I like defensive end best. Linebacker is more complicated but you get to make a lot of tackles.”

     His favorite defensive play is the pass rush. “If the quarterback doesn’t see you, you are fixing to get a kill.”

     He said he enjoyed playing against opponents who run the option. “You can break up their play.”

     As a whole, BA’s defense is showing improvement under the direction of defensive coordinator Johnny Lane Ball who coaches the line and the linebackers. Andrew Hickman works with the secondary.

     Culbertson used to play baseball but prefers concentrating on football. “My mom says I have an intense personality. Football fits my character.”

     He provided rave reviews when asked about his favorite dessert. “My mom’s chocolate chip cookies are awesome.”

     In the weight room, Culbertson can bench 275 pounds. He squats with 365.

     Asked about his future plans, Culbertson said he wants to become a veterinarian. “I’m going to take four years of undergraduate school in business and agriculture. Then I’m going to vet school.”

     Culbertson is an avid deer hunter.  In his free time, he enjoys watching linebacker Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens play on Sundays. He also follows former Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones, now a member of the Atlanta Falcons.