Leopard Cody Barnett
Cody Barnett is a rising junior at Lakewood High School. When he’s in school, his favorite class is math, but when class is over his favorite place is the football field.
Cody has been awarded the Defensive Player award for football twice.
Even though football is his favorite, baseball comes in a close second. Cody was on a travel ball team called the Rangers and the team made it into the second round of the playoffs.
“I’ve played baseball for about 7 years. I played the short stop, 3rd base positions, and anything in the outfield. I like baseball because it’s kind of a challenge for me, but it wasn’t enough of a challenge for me like football is, and that’s why I’d rather play football now,” Cody explained.
In talking about football, Cody stated that he’s able to get his aggressions out when playing the game.
“I was a line backer and left guard in football. I like football because it’s a tough contact sport. It’s nice, maybe, getting a big hit, and having everyone get fired up during the games. When everyone starts getting pumped up, then the players normally start playing good. I’ve played football since I was about 6 years old, and my favorite thing about football has always been the contact of the sport. I’m good at playing football, because I’m very aggressive when I get out on the field. I never hold anything back, I can just let it all out,” he said.
In looking back over this past season, Cody smiled as he remembered traveling to Trask, where Lakewood won, 32-14.
The Leopard snagged his first interception at that game.
Getting an interception was a goal Cody had set for himself at the beginning of the year, and he was happy he had been able to accomplish it.
To make him better on the football field, Cody tries to train daily in Brazilian Jujitsu. He said he uses the N.C. Justice Academy gym when he can.
Cody’s professional influence is Brian Urlacher, “ What I like about him is that he was always a hard hitter. He always gave it his all, no matter what.”
Brian Urlacher is a retired American football linebacker who spent his entire 13-year career playing for the Chicago Bears. He played college football for the University of New Mexico, where he was also recognized as an All-American and became one of the school’s most decorated athletes.
As for a coach’s influence, Cody said Lakewood’s football coaches never allow him to give less than 100 percent.
“My football coach, James Lewis, has made me into a better athlete by pushing me hard. If I had any slack he would jump on my back about it. He would always tell me not to quit, and I love football enough to try my best at it so I don’t want to give up,” he asserted.
“If my coaches were to see that I wasn’t going as hard as I could in practices, they would make me stay after and do something extra, and its never fun to have to do something like that. I try to be the best that I can be, so that doesn’t happen. My coach is always there to motive me anytime I need it on the field or off,” he added.
As for a home influence, Cody talks about his brother, Michael, and his dad, Mick Barnett.
“Michael is always there to push me and we work out together,” he said.
Cody said his father is always willing to do whatever was needed to support him and he can count on him being on the sidelines to yell out encouragement.
Cody is still undecided as to what he wants for his future. He’s considering applying to four-year colleges, but he’s also thinking of enlisting in the Marines to become a military police officer.