Starting from the bottom
Green goes from key special teams piece to No. 1 receiver
After Charles Johnson departed for the NFL and Israel Woolfork graduated, one of the biggest questions the Grand Valley State University football team faced entering the 2013 season was who
would step up in the receiving corps.
Senior wide receiver Brandan Green is trying to answer those questions and fill the void left by Johnson and Woolfork.
Green took the first step in establishing himself as the No. 1 wide receiver in last week’s 31-15 victory over Truman State University, when he caught six passes for 223 yards and one touchdown.
“I think what he’s done a good job of is stepping up here his senior year and taking advantage of his opportunities and grasping that role as the top wideout on our team,” head coach Matt Mitchell said.
Green proved to be a viable deep threat, as five of his six receptions were over 20 yards. He tallied big plays of 39, 51, 28, 33, and a 61-yard touchdown when junior quarterback Isiah Grimes threw a bomb that traveled nearly 75 yards in the air.
“I know he’s really fast and I know I can throw the ball pretty far and when we get those opportunities, we try to take advantage of them,” Grimes said.
Green came up through the football program the same way as most incoming freshman at GVSU—
receiving a redshirt. From there, he has seen his role increase after each season.
“They didn’t really feed me false information,” Green said. “They told me everyone goes through here and there’s a scout guy coming in. I expected to start on the bottom and work my way up.”
While Johnson and Woolfork have already departed, their influence is still felt on the GVSU program.
Through the years, Green has picked up on their work ethic and transferred that to his own game.
“Just seeing great guys like Israel Woolfork and Charles Johnson go through this program, just their
work ethic and being able to follow those guys and see how they do things,” Green said. “Even last
year, I couldn’t ask for more from Israel Woolfork. If I had a question about anything, he’d help me
out. That’s just basically where I’ve come. Just busting my butt and doing everything I can and
everything I’m asked on the field.”
Being only one of two seniors in the receiving corps, Green has taken it upon himself to be a mentor and role model for the younger receivers, just as Johnson and Woolfork were to Green.
“With the young receivers, I just try to help them out as much as I can,” Green said. “We got great
upperclassman that aren’t selfish at all. (We’re) not worried about them taking our spots and worried more about this program being a great program.”
On the field, one of the biggest traits of Green’s game is his speed. The 5’10” receiver remains a
threat for the Lakers, and when he gets the ball in space, he has the potential to make people miss
and break off a big play.
“Brandan Green probably has about as good of body control as anyone that we got on our roster,”
Mitchell said. “He can maintain balance and change directions and do a great job with that.
While Green has showcased how hard work and patience can pay off on the field, he also has managed to impress off the field. Besides being a leader and mentor for the younger players, he has performed well in the classroom.
“He’s kind of a model of what we do,” Mitchell said. “Socially great, academically great, and now I’m
glad in his senior year he’s starting to make some plays.”
Rec 6 Yards 223 TD’s 1
Rec 15 Yards 296 TD’s 2
Rec 8 Yards 82 TD’s 1
Rec 1 Yards 25 TD’s 0