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High school football: Columbia's Brandon Coleman wins Golden Helmet Award as Lorain County's top senior

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    Columbia High School's Brandon Coleman speaks to guests and teammates at the Columbia Football Banquet on Tuesday, November 27. Coleman earned the titles: PAC Off Back of the Year, Lorain County Off MVP, Northeast Lakes District Co-Offensive Player of the Year, and Matt Wilhelm Award.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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    Columbia High School's Brandon Coleman speaks to guests and teammates at the Columbia Football Banquet on Tuesday, November 27.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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COLUMBIA STATION — Nearly three miles.

During running back Brandon Coleman’s career at Columbia High School he set the Lorain County career rushing record with 5,141 yards. Altogether, that is 2.92 miles that he carried the football.

This season, after suffering a season-ending knee injury after the fifth game last year, Coleman picked up 1,698 yards and scored 23 touchdowns on the ground in earning first-team All-Ohio honors in Division IV.

On Tuesday night, at the Raiders’ annual football banquet, he became the third player in school history to be presented the Lorain County Golden Helmet Award.

“It’s been a journey, that’s for sure,” Coleman said. “It’s an honor to win this award and I’m so grateful for my teammates, my coaches, my mom, my dad and my brothers … just Columbia Station overall.”

Coleman joins running back Dustin Intihar (2002) and quarterback Jay Banyasz (2013) as Raiders who have won what coach Jason Ward called, during his introduction at the banquet, “Lorain County’s version of the Heisman Trophy.”

Ward talked to the crowd about the Golden Helmet Award, ticking off a list of notable former winners such as current Kent State quarterback Dustin Crum (2016), current Kentucky tight end C.J. Conrad (2014), former Ohio State defensive lineman Tracy Sprinkle (2012), Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Anthony Hitchens (2009), Super-Bowl winning linebacker Matt Wilhelm (1998) and former Cleveland Browns running back Ryan Myers (1997).

Coleman, who has yet to decide where he will play collegiately, said joining the list hasn’t really sunk in yet.

“I know I’m on there with some great players that went on to play in college,” he said. “Hopefully I can follow that and go on to do good things at the next level.”

Banyasz, who played at Notre Dame College, said Coleman’s recovery from major injury shows what kind of a kid he is.

“It says a lot about a person when you come back from adversity like that,” Banyasz said. “Even a small thing like missing a tackle or losing a game is one thing, but an ACL injury mid-season … this kid has no quit in him.

“He loves the game of football and is going to do whatever it takes to be successful at it.”

Banyasz also said Coleman’s winning of the Golden Helmet means a lot to the community.

“It’s well-deserved to say the least,” he said. “You see a lot of the hard work behind the scenes and the hard work on the field. It couldn’t go to a more deserving player. It brings a lot of pride to me and to Columbia.

“I love Columbia, and to see him win this award is awesome.”

Contact Mike Perry at (440) 329-7135 or macsportstalk@gmail.com.


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