SAN ANTONIO, Texas — USC commit Kenny Bigelow knew he would find a way into the backfield at the Army All-American game. He even had the foresight to see it could be future teammate Max Browne who he found there.
The five-star defensive tackle was right on both measures, but even he was surprised it happened on the first snap of the game.
“I don’t think anybody expected it, I didn’t expect it,” Bigelow said after the game. “We ran the stunt, it opened up perfectly, so I executed.”
And Browne felt it as he was sacked on the very first play, though Bigelow took caution knowing it was his future signal caller he was hunting.
“I never planned on hurting anyone at this game,” he said. “Especially not Max, so I did pull up.”
Browne finished the game 4-of-7 for 52 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked three times.
As for Bigelow, an Elkton (Md.) Tri-State Christian product, he set out to “put Delaware and Maryland on the map.” The stat sheet after the game says he only made two tackles, one for a 10-yard loss, plus a sack, but watching the game it was clear – if the nation didn’t know who Bigelow was before, they certainly do now.
“I went in at halftime, checked my phone it was vibrating,” he said grinning from ear to ear, “it’s still vibrating right now, it’s great.”
At his Army All-American jersey presentation in early December, Bigelow gave a heartfelt speech about his upbringing. He shared the story of his father’s battle with alcoholism and the phone call he received at age 14, informing him his father died in jail. At the ceremony Bigelow thanked his mother for “putting up with him” through the tough times and after the game on Saturday, shared his joy that he was able to put on the performance he did for her and his father.
“I’ve got my mom out here, she’s watching, my dad passed away – I did it for them,” he said. “All that type of stuff motivated me to do this”
“It was great to know I have so much support, so many people in my corner, and so many people behind me,” he said.
Brian Dohn contributed video to this report.