Bryan Vickers’ high school football career won’t end after today’s Heartland Christian Athletic Association Class 3A state championship game.
The Claremore Christian senior was recently selected to the 2020 Gatlinburg All-American Bowl, a postseason opportunity for private and homeschool players across the country. Vickers will compete as a wide receiver on an eight-man roster.
Players were selected to attend through a nomination process and vetted by a selection committee of qualified individuals in the private and homeschool football community.
The event will be held on Dec. 17-19 in Gatlinburg, Tenn., which is about 799 miles east of Claremore.
“One of my friends from where I used to play put my name in, and also one of the players here did,” Vickers said. “It means a lot to me to be selected, and hopefully I’ll do good.”
Vickers played quarterback for the first half of the season but switched to receiver because Claremore Christian coach Ryan Mullins wanted to give him more open-field opportunities.
“We just knew as we started getting into the season, we were probably going to end up running against Sunrise and probably Destiny at the end, so we really felt like we really needed to get him out to where I could get him the ball out in space,” Mullins said. “We had some teams we thought we could try this on, so I thought, ‘Well, let’s work Tyler (Stephens) (at quarterback)’, so we started working him a little bit, and he looked good at practice and looked OK in games. But the biggest thing for us is getting Vick out in space, and if I can do that, that gives me three really good skill players. As long as I have a quarterback who can make good decisions and get him the football, we like our options out there.”
Vickers was already accumulating lots of points and yards at quarterback, but he prefers receiver as his natural position.
He will be trading reps with Stephens at quarterback Saturday afternoon as well, though, just to keep Destiny Christian off-kilter.
“The transition was really easy because I played that in previous years,” Vickers said. “It was really easy for me to adjust, and it gives me more opportunities to showcase to colleges.
“I think I’m better at it than quarterback.”