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HCCHS Jaguar Montra Edwards Jr. aims to repay his father’s many sacrifices

SOURCE: Clarion Ledger

Montra Edwards Sr. home-schooled his son during his seventh-grade year when the father felt the school wasn’t meeting his standards.

In recent years, Edwards Sr. has set aside the completion of his master’s degree to foster the football career of Montra Edwards Jr., his 6-foot-3, 290-pound son. The father has spent countless hours taking Edwards Jr. to football camps, training sessions and helping him prepare for the ACT.

He’s willing to do whatever it takes to see his son prosper.

“My dad’s favorite phrase is, ‘Son, I just want to make sure I put you in a position to be able to take care of yourself if something happens to me,'” he said.

The plan appears to be working on and off the field.

A breakout season at Holmes County Central has made Edwards Jr. a member of the Clarion Ledger’s 2019 Dandy Dozen, a collection of the top 12 rising seniors in high school football for the state of Mississippi.

Rated a three-star recruit, Edwards Jr. has offers from LSU, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Arizona State, Auburn, Florida, Florida State and others. The defensive lineman finished his junior season at Holmes County Central with 107 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss and 13 sacks.

Edwards Sr., who is the defensive coordinator for his son’s team, played college ball at Jackson State and experienced the recruiting process, so naturally his input is valued. But he’s mostly taken a hands-off approach

“It has to be somewhere he feels comfortable for the next three, four, five years,” Edwards Sr. said. “I want to let that be his decision. He usually makes halfway decent decisions.”

Football may be the common love that strengthened the relationship between the father-son duo, but it’s just one of many common threads bringing the two together.

If they aren’t watching game film or football documentaries, they’re probably going fishing or out to eat. Lately, Edwards Sr. has been teaching his son how to grill. No matter what they’re doing, there’s sure to be plenty of conversation.

“(We talk) about things I could do to improve myself as a person and athlete,” Edwards Jr. said.

If his future does not include football, Edwards Jr. plans to attain a business degree and begin a joint business venture with his cousin in which he provides fitness training services.

But before Edwards Jr. can commit to any program or attain a business degree or even graduate high school, there’s some unfinished business in high school. At the top of that list is bringing a state championship to Lexington and continuing to make his father proud.

“He’s made a lot of sacrifices throughout my life so I feel that’s a small way I can pay him back for that.”

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