05/14/18 — Wood-Potter signs with UNC Pembroke

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Wood-Potter signs with UNC Pembroke

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on May 14, 2018 11:06 AM

SEVEN SPRINGS -- Brandon Wood-Potter is living his own version of "The Blind Side."

At 16, he left his birth parents' home.

"My mom said she wished she'd had an abortion," Wood-Potter said. "I was like 'these people ain't for me. I've got to get out of here.' I realized that I didn't want to be them. I wanted to one-up them."

Enter Jamie Jones.

When she and husband, Bruce, entered Wood-Potter's life, they immediately provided a nurturing, supportive and safe environment.

Wood-Potter thrived.

He developed a strong will and fortitude that gave him the determination to be better than the next guy -- especially on the football field.

Wood-Potter started his prep career at North Lenoir and transferred to Spring Creek between his sophomore and junior year since his adopted mom teaches there.

The decision drew criticism.

"My coach [at North Lenoir] said 'they're not going to have any program there and your football career is going to be done,'" Wood-Potter said. "This is the dumbest thing you've ever thought about doing. I realized right then if he was like that, I shouldn't be playing for him anyway.

"I came here and did what Coach Rob and Coach Kennedy told me to do, and everything has worked out fine."


Wood-Potter reaped the reward Friday. The 6-foot, 240-pound lineman signed a walk-on scholarship with Division II UNC Pembroke.

The call from the Braves came two days late.

Sitting in a theatre as "The Black Panther" played on the silver screen, Wood-Potter felt his phone ring.

He stepped outside.

"I was so happy, I didn't care about watching the movie," Wood-Potter said. "I said 'Sir, wherever I need to be, whenever I need to be there, however I need to do something, I'm going to be there.

"You gave me the opportunity to complete my dream and I will do anything for one. You gave me a shot and I appreciate it a lot."

There is one hitch.

Wood-Potter has to add 40 pounds to his frame before he reports to campus. Coach Kennedy stepped in and devised a plan where he eats six times a day -- a total of 4,000 calories.

"The nutrition plan, I follow it to the letter just like he tells me and it's working out fine," Wood-Potter said. "It's a lot of food, but systematic in when I drink water, when I eat and how fast I have to eat. I'm not just cramming it in."

Wood-Potter received the Golden Leaf Scholarship, which will pay out $12,000 over a four-year period. The award is given to a recipient who lives in a low economic-based rural community.