Northside graduate picks Lawson State
Mon. August 20, 2012 at 1:00 a.m. | By Andrew Carroll
TUSCALOOSA | The offer was a little late, but Brad Phillips was glad to get it.
Phillips, a 6-foot-2 right-handed pitcher, graduated from Northside High School before he got a chance to sign a scholarship. He’ll start classes today and play baseball at Lawson State Community College in Birmingham.
"I was very, very relieved because I didn’t think it was going to come, and I was just going to have to walk on," Phillips said. "When they gave me the opportunity, I was very thankful for it.
"It’s the perfect link for me. It’s not too far away. I’ve still got family here, so I can come back and see them whenever I want to."
Phillips earned his offer by demonstrating his skills at a Lawson State camp. A four-year member of the Northside varsity, Phillips played for coach Larry Mims and was a pitcher and shortstop as a senior.
Phillips said he expects to concentrate on pitching in college.
"I don’t think they’re going to want me to try any other positions," said Phillips, who is considering history as his college major. "We have 22 other freshmen coming in, so we’ve got guys who can play several positions in the infield and outfield. I think it’s going to be tough, not getting to hit any more."
Phillips compiled a 7-2 record with one save during the 2012 season.
"I can throw a fastball, curveball, changeup and spot up all of them pretty good," he said. "Location helped me a lot this summer. I can get it up there sometimes, but mainly it’s location."
Phillips should be in shape when he reports for fall practice. He spent the summer with the Tuscaloosa Post 34 American Legion baseball team. Post 34 won the Alabama championship and advanced to the Southeast Regional in South Carolina.
"It was great," Phillips said. "It was one of the best baseball moments I’ve had in my life, just getting to be with all those good players.
"My arm’s in good shape right now. Coach (Patrick) Jones had the pitchers running a lot, and I think that’s what they’re going to do at Lawson too."
Reach Andrew Carroll at email@example.com or at 205-722-0223.