FHS Bronco Dreyln Ford signs with Wake Forest

Published 6:41 pm Wednesday, December 19, 2018


On Wednesday afternoon, Franklin High School senior Drelyn Ford signed his intent to play football next year for Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The brief ceremony took place in the FHS auditorium. On the stage, Ford was seated at a table appropriately decorated with FHS school colors. With him for the occasion were his parents, Lynn Ford Jr. and Atorya Blow. Other family members, including his younger sisters, Lynae and Yvoni Ford, and older brother, LaQuadric Pittman, joined them to witness the signing. To signal his commitment, Ford then put on a white-colored WFU cap, much to the cheers and applause of everyone gathered.

“I honor God for giving me the ability to play at the next level,” he said afterward. “I thank my family, coaches, staff and friends, and Wake Forest for giving me this opportunity.”

Though before everyone arrived — which also included coaches and teammates — the athlete said he chose WFU because it’s a top school academically speaking. Further, “I feel I could play well there,” adding that training and playing in the tight end position was also particularly appealing. So too, of course, is everything else about the university. On a visit, Ford said, he found “the atmosphere is great. The coaching staff and team are also great. It’ll be a chance for me to play on the Atlantic Coast Conference level.”

Thinking back on his performance this past season, Ford said, “I was satisfied with what I did,” but he did acknowledge that the injury to his collar bone in the seventh game put him out of play. “I felt like I let the team down.”

Before the signing, a few people had a few words to say about the athlete, starting with the Broncos’ football coach, Karl Robertson: “This marks a big milestone in his life and that of the school. I’m very pleased it’s taking place. It was a pleasure to coach him.”

Robertson cited Ford’s past accomplishments, such as making first team all district, first team all regional and second team all state as a wide receiver.

He added, “These accolades bode well and I wish him a successful journey — nothing but the best.”

Robby Cutchins, who has coached Ford in basketball, said, “Drelyn has high character. There has never been an issue with this young man, of how he has carried himself these four years. He has grown tremendously as a man, brother and son.”

Cutchins also noted Ford’s performance in the game. For example, last year he had also made first team all regional and twice first team all district.

“I know he’ll be successful,” he said of Ford.

Principal Travis Felts told the audience, “This day is about Drelyn. Focus your attention on him. He’s been an outstanding student. He is everything you could ask for. I just know that he’ll do well academically and athletically for Wake Forest University.”

Felts added that Ford, who has been vetted by the WFU people, is getting a $400,000-plus scholarship.

“They definitely have done their homework,” the principal said.

Naturally, the parents are pleased as can be.

“I’m very excited,” said his father, Lynn, who also played junior varsity and varsity level football and basketball when he was at Franklin High in the early 1990s. Twice the team had gone to state level play.

Noting that Wake Forest had recruited his son, the father said, “This is a dream come true.”

“I’m very proud of him,” said his mother, Atorya. She recalled being with him from day one when he began his athletic “career” staring with T-ball at age 3. She added that in addition to football and basketball, Ford also plays baseball.

“He’s a terrific son, an awesome son,” she added. “It can’t get any better.”