A nagging ankle injury during Nick Brigham’s junior season prevented the 6-foot-4, 275-pound offensive lineman from living up to the hype he generated as a sophomore starter for the Marist School in Atlanta. Senior year, however, was a different story.
Brigham, who committed to Maryland last April, was 100 percent healthy this fall – and it showed.
“It was definitely back to normal, no question about it,” said Marist coach Alan Chadwick. “He made the all-county team [and] has a good shot at making all-state.”
Behind Brigham, who played right tackle, Marist ran its way to a 9-2 record and a berth in the Georgia AAAA State playoffs. The War Eagles fell in the first round of the postseason, but it wasn’t for lack of effort on Brigham’s part. Chadwick said the future Terp “played very well.”
“He just did some great things,” Chadwick said. “The main thing is we’re an option-based team and we’re going to have to knock and push off the line of scrimmage. We had the guard he teamed up with, [and] they were one of the better guard-tackle combos that we’ve had.”
Brigham, who also spent time on Marist’s defensive line, finished the season with 12 pancake blocks and 16 “big blocks.” He also graded out at 86 percent on his blocks, and consistently got to the second – and sometimes third – level. Chadwick said there was “no question” that opposing defenses were forced to constantly account for Brigham in their game plans.
“There were a lot of teams playing different techniques based on playing us,” Chadwick said. “Sometimes people will grab grass and just dive on the ground to keep from getting knocked back into the linebacker. ... He did a pretty effective job of” handling different looks.
Chadwick said he’ll remember Brigham as a “big body that came off the ball with a vengeance.” He expects his star lineman to continue living up to that reputation once he arrives in College Park.
“I think he’s anxious to get up there and turn this thing around, get it straightened out,” Chadwick said. “He still loves the coaches, loves the school and thinks it’s still the right place for him. I think he’s anxious to get started and be a productive member of the football program.”