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Cambridge Christian follows Park's example

Special correspondent
Published:   |   Updated: March 19, 2013 at 01:29 AM
TAMPA -

Brandon Park isn't the biggest or strongest guy on the field.

In fact, at 5-foot-8, 160 pounds, the Cambridge Christian linebacker is one of the smallest, but he has something a lot of his opponents don't have. He has a heart that's a lot bigger than his frame, and he is a leader on a team that has big playoff hopes this season.

Park doesn't lead by yelling and hollering; he simply lets his actions do the talking. Sometimes being the first one to practice and the last one to leave are more important than just being all about bluster.

"I just want to lead by example, not by yelling,'' Park said. "I work hard in every practice and that's how I am. It comes naturally and I don't try to fool anyone. I just try to let everyone see how hard I work and let them see how it is supposed to be done.''

Cambridge lost only six seniors, and is thinking playoffs. Coach Bob Dare said Park is a big part of the playoff run.

"He's a natural leader,'' Dare said. "He's tough and hard-nosed. He isn't a big guy, but he's a fierce competitor and he is never intimidated by anyone.''

Dare said Park simply refuses to come off the field. Besides his duties at linebacker, he also plays running back and he'll fight for every minute he can get on the field.

"I have him on offense, defense, special teams and he'll battle with me for every minute,'' Dare said. "He will do whatever it takes to stay on the field for every play.

Park said playing every down comes with the job.

"I just have to keep it up and that's what it takes to be a leader,'' Park said. "When heads start dropping, I just keep it up.''

When it comes to battling players that are so much larger, Park said he just doesn't pay attention.

"Yeah, they might be bigger than me, so I just have to outwork them,'' Park said. "I have to want it more than they do.''

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