Student Athlete of the Week: Ocean Springs Quarterback Bray Hubbard
Brayson Hubbard is certainly no stranger to making a television appearance here on News 25 as one of the unquestioned leaders of both the Ocean Springs football and baseball teams.
Heading into district play and a homecoming game against Hancock, the Greyhounds already have three signature wins under their belt thanks in large part to Hubbard’s next level quarterback play.
“I think you saw it the most in the Clinton game where he had to go out for the one play and we had the bad snap and he just snaps his shoulder back into place and said let’s go.”
Despite his relaxed demeanor and ‘Sunshine’-esque locks Bray Hubbard has been sporting since seventh grade, he leaves that identity behind as soon as he hits the field.
As a sophomore, Hubbard was handed the reigns to the Greyhound football squad. While last year’s team consisted of several senior leaders including Hubbard’s brother, this year, Hubbard knew it was his time to lead. “Now that they’re gone, I had to step up and be a leader of this team because everybody is really looking at the quarterback. So being a quarterback you have to step up and be a leader, kinda haul everybody in and be a leader, that’s it.”
Ocean Springs Head Football Coach Blake Pennock said, “He’s done a really good job of asserting himself more as the top guy. And as he said earlier, he’s the quarterback. And there’s two positions that you really look at on a football team, it’s the quarterback and the head coach and it’s one of those things he’s really taken on and didn’t shy away from.”
As a sophomore Hubbard was pegged as a run-only quarterback. Wanting to change that narrative, the junior put in the work over the summer to strengthen his arm and become a dual-threat QB. Three games into his junior season, he’s done just that. He’s thrown for 666 yards, 9 touchdowns, and only had one interception. “There were some doubters that said he’s just going to be the guy that’s going to run it and all these things, but it’s a process and I’ve seen it happen in my coaching career with other quarterbacks that I’ve had who were similar skill sets to him and it just depends on how committed he is.”
“Now I’m staying in the pocket a lot longer. So, off-season is really what got me to where I am now just by practicing a lot and having that pocket awareness.”
During the off-season, Hubbard wasn’t just focused on his throwing motion, the Southern Miss baseball commit was traveling with the SBG Sox prime team on the weekends. “Football is actually– it helps me with my velocity for baseball. But it’s hard coming back from a hard weekend of baseball, throwing a baseball back-to-back and just throwing a lot then coming back to a football. It takes me– you can ask Coach Pennock– it takes me a while to get that spin back on the football from throwing a baseball for a while.”
While he’s unsure if his future will include football, Hubbard does know that anything he does is for his mother who passed away four years ago from breast cancer.
In the west end zone, underneath the scoreboard with a view of the field Hubbard’s older brother also played on and his older sister cheered on, is a bench dedicated to Courtney Hubbard. “I look at the bench all the time and I’m like man, I wish she was here, but at the same time I’m like doing this for her. Everything I do is for her. So, it’s kinda hard some days like some days go by and it’s like man I wish she could be here, but at the same it’s like she’s in a better place. So, I’m just happy.”
In his mom’s honor, Hubbard wears a pink headband no matter the month.
Next up for Hubbard and his Greyhounds is a home game against Hancock at 7 p.m.
To nominate someone you believe deserves to be featured as WXXV’s Student Athlete of the Week, please reach out to Grace Boyles through email (firstname.lastname@example.org), Facebook (@GraceBBoyles), and Twitter (@GraceBBoyles).
Nominees can participate in any sport and be any age. Make sure to tune in every Wednesday to see which local athlete we spotlight next.