High School coach praises Carolina Panther Josh Norman's perseve - FOX Carolina 21

High School coach praises Carolina Panther Josh Norman's perseverance

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Josh Norman (Courtesy: Carolina Panthers/ NFL) Josh Norman (Courtesy: Carolina Panthers/ NFL)
Panthers cornerback Josh Norman is pictured with his high school football team in Greenwood High School. Norman is number 6. (Photo provided) Panthers cornerback Josh Norman is pictured with his high school football team in Greenwood High School. Norman is number 6. (Photo provided)
GREENWOOD, SC (FOX Carolina) -

He's fast and quick to the ball and many call him a wide receiver's nemesis. When Josh Norman laces up his cleats, Shell Dula says he becomes a play maker.

"Josh was a competitor, he played hard," Dula said.

Norman is a cornerback with the Carolina Panthers. Long before Norman and his team mates were headed to the Super Bowl, Dula, Norman's former Greenwood High School football coach, knew him as a kid conquering the game of life.

"He did what he had to do," he said.

And that meant proving to himself and others that he would be a great player. In 2006, many labeled him and his teammates as underdogs. But they won the state championship.

"Josh was a major leader of that team," Dula said.

He said Norman wanted to play college football and coaches with the University of Georgia took a peek, but then passed.

"They chose not to recruit him, but he didn't let that defeat him," he said.

Norman went to a junior college before making his way to Coastal Carolina University in Conway. He became a walk-on and fought for a position on the team. Later, he became a late-round NFL draft pick and eventually landed with the Carolina Panthers.

"And now he's one of the two most outstanding corners in the NFL," he said.

Dula, who's now executive director with the South Carolina Athletics Association, said Norman has taught us all about perseverance and to never give up.

"In 2006 nobody thought we could win, nobody gave him a scholarship, they drafted him in the 5th round," Dula said.

The former coach believes Norman remembers all of the "no's" and takes all of that with him on the field and throughout life.

"He hasn't forgotten where he came from and he hasn't forgotten who he is," Dula said.

So, even if he doesn't come home with a Super Bowl ring, the former Eagle, now Panther has shown so many how to soar like a champion.

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