Daylyn Croom did it all for North Forrest this past season.

When the Eagles needed a touchdown, the senior quarterback found a way to score one, whether it be through the air or on the ground. When they needed a big two-point conversion, he was the man for the job. When they needed a stop on defense, he could either pick off a pass or force a fumble.

Croom was the engine that kept this team going even in the most adverse situations.

“He just had a brilliant senior year. That was the way to go out,” North Forrest head coach Anthony Dillon said of Croom. “He accounted for over 50 touchdowns for us throwing and rushing. He was a big part of our success this year.”

Through the air, Croom passed for 2223 yards and 32 touchdowns. On the ground, he was just as unstoppable, rushing for 1219 yards and 18 touchdowns. He even caught a touchdown, bringing his season total to 51.

On defense at defensive back, he compiled 28 tackles, three interceptions and two forced fumbles.

But more importantly, he helped the Eagles go 9-5 and reach the third round of the Class 2A playoffs.

For accomplishing those feats in what was a spectacular senior season, Croom has been named our Sports601 Hattiesburg Player of the Year.

“It’s an honor,” Croom said. “All year I’ve been working hard. I had one goal and that was to win state. We came up short, but I’m honored to win this award. I feel like I earned it with everything I did.”

Dillon agrees, especially because of the toughness Croom displayed week in and week out.

“To be undersized like that and facing the tough defenses we played in the playoffs, I tell ya, that guy stood in there and took licks,” Dillon said. “But he popped right back up off the ground every time.”

His grit certainly cannot be questioned. Just take their playoff game against Taylorsville for example as Croom started and played with a torn meniscus.

“I really didn’t have a choice. My team needed me,” Croom said. “They said, ‘Could you go?’ It hurt, but I had to do what I had to for my team.”

Now Dillon and his North Forrest coaching staff are tasked with finding a replacement at quarterback starting next season. A tough task for sure.

“We’re going to really miss him next year,” Dillon said. “We’re just scratching our head as coaches right now just thinking about who on our team next year can do half of the things that Daylyn did.”

“Wish him nothing but the best in the future,” Dillon added. “I was honored to be able to coach him and have him on my team.”