E.A. Sports Today

Focused forward

Munford’s Gibson never got distracted by the noise, signs with Troy, ready to get down to business

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

MUNFORD – A lot has happened in the world Munford lineman Kyler Gibson is about to immerse himself in since he committed to play football at Troy this past summer.


The Trojans changed head coaches and the conference in which they are committed to playing is undergoing some ground-shaking changes.

They are the kind of things that could have an impressionable young recruit rethinking his position.

But Gibson isn’t wired that way. He’s the consummate be-where-your-feet-are kind of guy.

He blocked out the noise and stayed committed to the program that remained committed to him. He made it official Wednesday, signing his letter with the Trojans in the morning and then recreating the act for friends and family in the school cafeteria.

“That’s what I’m about,” Gibson said. “I’m about getting the job done and then you can have fun.

“I’m more of a business guy. I’m ready to get to work. I don’t focus on the outside publicity and all the commotion going on; I’m like, let’s get it done. My dad’s a captain in the Oxford Police Department, so I’ve had very good influence on getting things done and not getting distracted. I’ve been raised to get the job done and then you can have fun.”

It’s that focus that has made him the player he is today. And it extends all the way to the classroom, a lesson he learned at an early age. He once brought home an 88 during a quarterly grading period and had his phone and X-box taken away for a couple weeks. He hasn’t done that again.

“My dad’s always said there’s no such thing as having a crooked A, an A-minus,” he said. “If you’re going to have an A-minus, you might as well have an A. If you have an A, you might as well have an A-plus.”

The biggest potential kink to Gibson connecting with Troy Nov. 21 when the school fired head coach Chip Lindsey before the end of the regular season. All it took was one phone call to clear up where Gibson stood.

“There was 50-50 shot getting honored or not, but Troy is a very respectable school; they liked me from Day One,” he said. “The AD called me the night after Coach Lindsey got fired and said, ‘We like you, we still want you to play here.’ I told him I’d stay committed.

“Of course, you have to worry you won’t have the scholarship honored. I had other (Sun Belt Conference) coaches and colleges interested, but my main priority was being a Troy Trojan.”

Gibson has never been one to back off a challenge; he already plays basketball and baseball in addition to football and will add even more to his plate in the spring as he puts the shot for the first time. In fact, Lions head coach Michael Easley said if anything the coaches had to pull the 6-5, 280-pound lineman back from drills as opposed to pushing him to go, a trait he figures the Troy coaches will quickly discover.

His first high school game was a start as a freshman against Oxford, blocking two older and established players who would go on to become all-conference in the SEC and OVC.

He’ll get thrown into a similar fire if his college career follows the same arc. The Trojans open next season at Ole Miss.

Of course, he’ll be coming into the program behind a three-time all-conference left tackle, but he will have the chance to compete for playing time at right tackle and maybe play in the season opener.

“With the experience I’m about to learn and the experience I’ve had with the high recruits and big guys I’m ready for it,” he said. “I’m ready for the task at hand.”

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