In his senior year of high school, he had reached 6'3" tall and was over 300 pounds; unfortunately not much of it muscle. He wanted so badly to play for the Arkansas Razorbacks but he only received two scholarships from Division II schools. This didn't deter him and he tried out as "walk-on," at the school. The coaches (Danny Ford was head coach at the time in 1995), loved how big he was but they didn't think he could make it. But, because of Brandon's passion for the game plus his positive influence on the other players, they decided to focus on his weight-lifting to give him some muscle mass and they worked on his speed. It paid off and he made the team.
Then he began excelling in a huge way and made the ALL SEC TEAM, his sophomore year and then the great news came, he earned a full football scholarship. In his senior year he took part in the NFL's combine which evaluates the athleticism of potential drafts. Brandon at around 300 pounds of mostly muscle at this point, ran an amazing 4.88 seconds in a 40-yard dash; this is way better than most linemen anywhere.
While at home watching the draft, he got a phone call from the Indianapolis Colts to come play for them. The house filled with friends and family erupted. They couldn't believe that this kid who didn't have any team truly believing in him, became a superstar in college and was now going to play in the NFL.
While on break from the Colts during his rookie season, Brandon was driving his truck on his way to pick up his mom for church, when his vehicle crossed the center line and he was killed by a semi-truck. He was 22 years-old at the time.
Every year his comeback story is told at a ceremony honoring the best walk-on player in the country. This extraordinary award is called: "The Burlsworth Trophy." Last year's winner was the outstanding wide receiver from Clemson, Hunter Renfrow, who was drafted by the Raiders.
Brandon was an awesome young man and I'm so glad he'll always be remembered for his work ethic, passion for the game, positive impact on his teammates, and his never-give-up attitude. He is an inspiration.