Some legends don’t need to be taller than they are

Published 10:03 am Thursday, December 3, 2015

Ask anyone who knew him, anyone who saw him play, and they’ll all mention the same thing about Sean Brewer.

“If only he was about four inches taller,” they’ll say.

Deep down, though, they all know it’s a good thing he wasn’t. If he was, Brewer almost certainly would have been sent down a different path in life.

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On Tuesday, Brewer will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. The 5-foot-10, 240-pounder from Redwood, Warren Central and Millsaps College won’t be the biggest man or the biggest name on the stage. But, pound-for-pound, he’s had as big an impact on the game and the lives of hundreds of young people as anyone else.

On the field, Brewer is the most dominant defensive tackle ever to play Division III football. He’s the only player at the position to ever be selected All-America three times, and the award given to the top defensive lineman in Division III is named after him.

He’s now the principal at Rosa Scott High School in Madison, a devout Christian, humble, and one of the hardest-working people you’ll ever meet. In 2010, he was named the state principal of the year. Just recently he and his wife Margaret adopted one of his students at Rosa Scott into their family.

“He’s the kind of person you’d want to mentor your child,” said Curtis Brewer — no relation — one of his coaches at Warren Central.

“We had an accounting class together, and had to study for an exam. Neither one of us had studied,” said Paul Grace, a former teammate at Millsaps. “I thought I was pretty good at accounting. I’m an auditor now. We crammed all night and I got a B-plus. He got an A.”

If Brewer had been taller, he likely would have gotten some Division I offers. There’s no doubt he could have excelled on that level. He also might have been just another really good player on a team full of them.

Playing football at a bigger school might also have led him to stay in business, which he got his degree in, or to a professional football career. Instead, he wound up in education and become a leader we in Warren County can be proud to call one of our own.

When they meet a legend, most people say they figured they’d be taller.

Thankfully, with Sean Brewer, that wasn’t the case.

Ernest Bowker is a sports writer. He can be reached at

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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