Whether it’s on the football field or the wrestling mats, Calhoun’s Donnell Anthony has done a whole lot of winning over the last few years.
And Anthony, a senior two-sport star for the Jackets, hasn’t just won; he’s done it on the highest level.
Last February, Anthony was the last man standing in the 138-pound weight class at the Class AA State Traditional Tournament to earn him an individual state title.
That accomplishment came just a few months after he was a part of Calhoun’s first football state championship team since 1952.
So far during his senior year, he has helped lead the Jackets back to the Georgia Dome for their fifth straight appearance in the Class AA State Championship Game, and now that it’s wrestling season, he’s looking like he’s ready for another deep run at state on the mats.
Anthony’s wrestling coach, Dale Hales, describes Anthony as a winner who will “do whatever it takes to come out ahead on the scoreboard.”
Recently, the Calhoun Times caught up with Anthony to discuss the current wrestling season, his time as an athlete at Calhoun High, the challenges of being a multi-sport student athlete, his plans after high school and several other subjects.
Here’s what he had to say:
CT: Talk about this wrestling season. How do you think it’s gone so far? What are your expectations as it comes closer to the end?
Anthony: This season’s going great right now. I’ve been really successful. My expectations are to be a two-time state champion as a wrestler before I leave Calhoun High School.
CT: After coming off a state championship in wrestling last year, how tough is it to come back this season and stay at that level?
Anthony: It’s hard because everyone’s gunning for you. You’re the big shot now so it’s a different feel this season.
CT: Just in general, how difficult is it being a high school wrestler for people that don’t really know what all goes into it?
Anthony: It’s hard because you’ve got to keep your composure. You just have to be willing to do the work on and off the mat.
CT: What has it been like to be a part of so much success over the last few years in football and wrestling?
Anthony: I feel blessed. The Lord has blessed me with good athletic ability, and I’m very thankful for it. I’m thankful for all the things we’ve been able to do and what I’ve been blessed with.
CT: This past football season, the team came up short in the state championship game. How tough was that to not get to the ultimate goal after winning it the previous year?
Anthony: It was a tough loss. I think back and feel like we could’ve done better. We could’ve done some things right. I really can’t say too much about it because (Jefferson) was a really good team.
CT: How tough is it to balance multiple sports and school?
Anthony: Playing back-to-back sports it’s pretty tough because I still have school. I’m trying to get grades to go to college, and trying to maintain that is difficult along with sports.
CT: What’s your favorite memory as an athlete at Calhoun?
Anthony: My favorite memory is (Adam Griffith’s) game-winning field goal (in the state championship game last year). It was against a really good, powerhouse football team with Buford.
CT: Which one of your coaches has had the biggest influence on you personally?
Anthony: It would be Coach (Hal) Lamb. He just taught me to not be one of the guys that doesn’t succeed after high school. He wants me to make something of myself.
CT: What are your plans for after high school?
Anthony: I want to play college football and major in sports management.
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