Joe Garner, a 5’6, 170-pound 2018 linebacker from Hillsboro, hopes to help lead the Eagles to another big season on the gridiron after a strong offseason.
He is an intense player that competes at a high pace and plays with a big motor.
“I have a motor and love pushing through adversity to make my team successful,” Garner said. “What I bring to my team is leadership and a good example to follow. Showing up to summer workouts and doing my very best every single rep.”
Garner helped Hillsboro go 9-3 last season and says the Hawks most important game was a 72-46 win over Sikeston in a district semifinal contest.
“They were a well established and very athletically gifted team so it was a highly anticipated game,” Garner said. “I finished the game with two forced fumbles and two recoveries. We scored over 70 points and won.”
Garner says he has been focused on improving his ability to finish tackles in the offseason as well as getting stronger.
“I’ve been working and improving on my physicality … I’m usually in the right spot to make the play I just need to finish stronger,” he said.
Garner started playing football in eighth grade and says the most influential person in his football career has been his head coach Lee Freeman.
“He’s been with me ever since I decided to play and has helped me,” Garner said.
Garner says he is a fan of former NFL star linebacker Ray Lewis and tries to pattern his game after him as best he can.
“(Lewis) was always the man to motivate himself and his team to improve and get better day in and day out and he is known as one of the greatest players in history,” Garner said.
He currently does not hold any offers, but is hoping with a strong senior season he will draw interest from college programs.