By Robert Wilson
This is a strong suggestion to all the offensive coordinators who play Brandon the rest of the season: make sure you know where No. 9 is on every play.
No. 9 is Brandon junior defensive lineman Jaeden Calendar. Warren Central head coach Josh Morgan and offensive coordinator Rob Morgan found out about Calendar last Friday night.
The 6-foot-1, 220-pound Calendar had 16 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, and one sack to help Brandon to a 21-3 victory over previously undefeated Warren Central in a MHSAA Class 6A, Region 3 game at Vicksburg.
For his outstanding performance, Calendar has been named the Junction Deli Metro Jackson Football Player of the Week.
Calendar, who plays defensive end, dominated the line of scrimmage, and led the Brandon defense to not allow a touchdown against the high-powered Warren Central offense, which came in averaging 34.5 points per game. Warren Central made a 28-yard field goal on its first drive of the game but didn’t score again. Warren Central threatened to score only two more times, but Brandon made an interception in the end zone and then stopped Warren Central on downs at the Brandon 4-yard line.
“Jaeden is a great young man who plays as hard as any guy in the state,” Brandon coach Sam Williams said. “He is a hard-working young man who prides himself on outworking his opponents during the week and on the field. Jaeden’s development as a defensive lineman has allowed us to be special on defense this year. He, along with Deaundre Washington and Trey Trigg, have really improved and become a fun unit to watch on Friday nights. I am proud of Jaeden’s growth and the player he has become over the last two years.”
Calendar has his best game yet Friday against Warren Central.
“Jaeden chased the ball all night,” Brandon defensive coordinator Greg Robinson said. “He made tackles on screen plays on the opposite side. Jaeden had a lot of energy all night. It didn’t matter if the play was to him or away. Jaeden kept pressure on the quarterback, which always helps the secondary. He’s a fun player to coach. Jaeden has a high motor and is always active. It’s the way we teach it and the standard that’s been set. All 11 players to the ball. Jaeden has bought into our philosophy and is doing a great job so far. I look for him to continue to get better. He has only played five games as a defensive lineman. He played very little linebacker last year. Jaeden has really worked hard to get in this position and help his team in any way he can.”
Calendar leads Brandon with 60 tackles, 11 tackles for loss and 4 sacks this season. He recovered a fumble and ran for a 29-yard return against Oxford.
He had 31 tackles and one fumble recovery and helped Brandon to a 11-3 record and a 6A state runner-up finish last season as a sophomore.
Brandon goes for its sixth straight victory Friday when it plays host to Petal in a region game at Brandon. Mississippi Scoreboard selects a football player from Hinds, Madison, or Rankin County each week. Coaches can nominate a player by text or call to Robert Wilson at 601.506.2276 or email [email protected].