Eupora's Embry makes next step to West Alabama

Charvez Embry

Staff Writer

When President Theodore Roosevelt used the phrase “speak softly and carry a big stick,” he probably wasn’t referring to Eupora native Charvez Embry.

However, it applies to the big defensive lineman just the same.

Standing 6-3, 285 pounds, Embry is a man of few words. That hasn’t stopped him from being a force on the football field and he’s handled his business on every level so far. It took him from the Eupora Eagles to Holmes Community College and now to West Alabama, where he signed on Wednesday.

For the Eagles, Embry became a starter his junior season and finished with nearly 100 tackles in his last two years combined. His big body and dominating nature on the field led to some options after high school and he settled on the decision to play junior college football at Holmes Community College.  

Eupora head coach Stephen Edwards noticed quickly that Embry had what it takes to be a college football player. The work ethic was there, the size and ability were also there, all that was left was to throw him on to the field of play and let him do what he does best.

“We knew that he could play at this level," Edwards said. "He’s just a real good football player and I knew that he would work hard. At this stage, there’s not a whole lot of high school kids that can get (to college). You’ve got to have a little something within yourself and we knew that. To be as good as he is as a football player, he’s a better person.”

At Holmes, Embry became the starting defensive tackle for the Bulldogs and had 31 tackles this season with two pass breakups in just nine games. He also made an impact in the locker room and off the field.

After the season, Holmes' coaches and administration awarded Embry the Milton Lee Olive Courage and Character Award. The award is given in honor of Olive who was the first African American to be awarded a Congressional Medal of Honor in the Vietnam War when he sacrificed his life by falling on a grenade for his platoon.

The Holmes County native would have certainly been proud of Embry’s work on and off the field and he appreciated the honor. Embry also appreciated his time at Holmes as a whole as it prepared him for the next stage at West Alabama where he signed on Wednesday for his final two years of football.

“Holmes taught me how to become a better person and a better player and how to have a better life,” Embry said. “I put on about 30 or 40 pounds at Holmes which was quite a journey but much needed. It was simple and easy to do for me.”

West Alabama is a proud and tradition-rich program that has been winners for several years. It's coming off 10 and eight-win seasons over the last two years and Embry is hoping to help take things to the next level.
The town of Livingston and the school itself were big selling points for the laidback individual, as was the coaching staff.

“They showed a lot of love to me and seemed like they wanted me on campus so it wasn’t really a hard decision,” Embry said. “The area around isn’t very big so I can stay out of trouble, stay in the books and get my degree.”

With so much accomplished already, it’s hard for Embry to believe that there’s still so much to accomplish. That includes finishing out his college career and getting his diploma. His coach expects nothing but the best and for him to leave a lasting impression.

“He’s a quality kid that’s going to be a quiet leader, but he’s someone up front on defense that’s athletic with long arms who can make plays,” Edwards said. “He can be just like he was for us just a couple of years ago.”