Gibson inks NLI to Charleston Southern

by | November 20, 2018 10:48 pm

Henry Gibson, Colleton County’s five-tool player who most often handles the catching duties for the Cougars, will call Charleston Southern University home.

Gibson inked his National Letter of Intent to play for Charleston Southern University during a ceremony held Tuesday, November 20, 2018. Gibson joins the NCAA Division I Buccaneers who compete in the Big South Conference.

“I am excited to start my next chapter at Charleston Southern University and I’m very excited to play the game I love for a great school.” – Henry Gibson on signing to continue his career as a Buccaneer at CSU. Photo by Cindy Crosby

As a six-year veteran of the Cougar Baseball program, Gibson has played a significant role in the Cougar’s recent success and should figure prominently in the spring bid for a Region VII-AAAA conference championship. Gibson was named Rookie of the Year (2016), All-Region (2016-18) and All-Lowcountry (2017) for Colleton County.

Choosing Charleston Southern over a preferred walk-on from Clemson University Baseball and an offer from Florence-Darlington Technical School, Gibson made his decision in early August. “Coach Schafer saw me at a camp in early January,” said Gibson. “He continued to follow up with me and kept in contact with my travel ball coach. I received the offer this past summer.”
Why Charleston Southern? According to Gibson, it just felt like home. the decision states the atmosphere and location of the North Charleston campus felt like home.

“The atmosphere and location of the North Charleston campus felt like home,” said Gibson who has played the sport since he was five-years-old. “The CSU coaching staff made me feel at home and I genuinely liked the goals they have set for myself, the team and the baseball program. I knew it was the right fit academically, because it’s a small college, everything is close together and it seems like a close-knit family. Academics played a big role in my decision as CSU. I see myself working hard in the classroom and on the baseball field at CSU.”

Colleton County District Athletic Director Leon Hammond opened Tuesday’s signing ceremony welcoming parents, family members and guests to the historic day at CCHS. “This is a very special day for these young men and for Colleton County High School as it is the first time in recent history that we’ve had four baseball players sign on the same day,” said Hammond. “Four years ago, I came here and had the opportunity to coach one of these young men in basketball and had another in my physical education class – so this is fun for me after having watched them grow over the course of the last four years. I’m really excited and proud of each of you and can’t wait to watch you play your senior season.”

“For so many students, athletics and other extracurricular activities serve as a way out or an opportunity to open new doors,” said CCHS Principal Maurice Cannon. “Here we have four scholars who are really the epitome of scholar-athletes, having proven capable of the academic rigor and what it takes to go on to post-secondary education as well as represent on the athletic field. To these students, I say congratulations and I ask that the same foundation you have received at Colleton County High School – you take on to your post-secondary schools of your choice. To all the families in attendance today, I also say congratulations for raising such fine young men who are going to go on and represent us and Colleton County High School in such a fine way.”

“This will come from the heart,” said Cougar head baseball coach Jermale Paige during the signing ceremony. “Five years ago, I came to this program and since then I have had the pleasure of watching you all grow and mature into the young men you are today. For the past ten years, you got up and put in the work – doing what you needed to do by going to the field and getting better. Through four seasons, summer, fall, winter and spring, for 10 years, you’ve done the work – and today it has finally paid off. You’ve made this community proud, you’ve made your families proud – and you’ve made me proud. I love each of you more than I can say.”

Colleton County Cougar Baseball had a historic day Tuesday, November 20, 2018, when four players inked scholarships to continue their academic and athletic career at the collegiate level. Photo by Cindy Crosby

“I would like to thank every coach from t-ball to high school who has moved on and isn’t with me right now,” said Gibson. “They helped me get where I am today by pushing me to be my best – on and off the field. Though many people have helped me across the years, I need to acknowledge my travel coaches Coach Ryan and Coach Corey, along with my high school coaches including Coach Paige, Coach Marshall, Coach Willis and Coach Jacob.”

“I would also like to thank my mom and dad for pushing me to do my best and for all the sacrifices they made so I could play the game I love,” said Gibson. “I would like to thank my sister for her support and encouragement, as well as my extended family and friends who have helped me accomplish my goals along the way.”

Gibson, who has a 3.3 GPA, is the son of James and Patty Gibson. He plans to pursue an undergraduate degree in wildlife management.

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