Spain Park’s Forrest finds a future with Belhaven
By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Editor
HOOVER— Every high school athlete dreams of National Signing Day. A chance to enjoy and participate in the spectacle that takes place each February when high school athletes across the country announce where they intend to continue their careers.
For Spain Park’s Mickey Todd Forrest, the dream almost became a nightmare.
Forrest, a former quarterback at both Oak Mountain and Spain Park, agreed to attend West Georgia Tech, a community college in Douglassville, Ga., to become a member of the first football team the school fielded.
Unfortunately, Forrest’s dreams took a drastic turn.
The night before he was to sign, Forrest was notified that West Georgia Tech had withdrawn their bid to field a football team, citing long-term cost sustainability as the reason for pulling the plug.
“It was hard,” Forrest said. “I didn’t know what was going to happen. I sent stuff out to anyone.”
While Forrest was looking for schools, a school’s new coaching staff was looking for a quarterback. Hal Mumme, former Kentucky head coach and one of the inventors of the “Air Raid” offense, took over the head coaching position at Belhaven University in January 2014.
His staff began recruiting for the quarterback position for the Blazers, and through former Oak Mountain coach Logan Colafrancesco, were directed to Forrest.
“We were looking for a kid to be the future,” Belhaven co-offensive coordinator Corey Fipps said. “(We) got him on campus, (and) we think he can do some great things.”
Forrest was apprehensive about signing, given the previous situation. He said his fears were alleviated when Mumme himself called.
“When Coach Mumme called me from his private line, I knew,” he said. “The way they talked to me, I felt they wanted me.”
Forrest’s familiarity with the style of offense was a huge plus for BU.
“He understands the concepts,” Fipps said. “Mickey’s a smart guy, (and) it’s a very quarterback-dependent offense.”
Forrest said he was grateful for the opportunity.
“That load coming off my chest is huge,” he said. “It felt good to be wanted again. To know you have a place, that’s a great feeling.”