Charles Dillard ranks as top two-sport player

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Courier Sports Writer

This year's Cannon Courier Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2015 inductee Charles Dillard went down as one of the top two-sport athletes in Woodbury High School history.

"Words cannot describe how I am feeling," Dillard said about his induction on May 21. "It is great the athletes in Cannon County are starting to get recognized."

He was a two sport star in both football and basketball during his time in Cannon County from 1973-1977 which he set several records in program history. It all started during his freshman year as he helped the football team to a 7-3 record, including a division championship in the Duck River District. While, the basketball finished 17-9 later during the winter.

His high school career reached another level during the following year as the football team had a perfect 10-0 record, and they became Duck River Champions for the first time in school history, while the basketball team won District 8 for the first time in over a quarter century, and Dillard was selected to the All-District team.

During his junior year, the success continued for Dillard and both squads. He was selected most outstanding offensive player, All Duck River Conference, All Mid-State First Team and All State Honorable Mention for his work on the football field. While on the basketball court, Woodbury finished 20-8 and played into the sub-state. He was honored with All Class a First Team, All District 8 tournament and All State Honorable Mention as he led the team with the most rebounds and steals during that magical season. By the way, Dillard was also elected Class President.

His high school career ended with more success in both sports as he was named most outstanding offensive player and all mid-state for the 5-5 team, which only gave up more than 14 points in a game twice during the season. However, the basketball court is where they shined finishing 20-4, and Dillard earned several awards including team captain, all mid-state first team, all District 8 tournament, all state and he led the team in rebounding, best field goal percentage. He also set the career scoring mark in school history with 1,326 points.

In the classroom, he was once again named class officer, most athletic and the best all around. However, Dillard mentioned a special moment from both sports during his high school career. He remembered during the region basketball tournament, he blocked an attempt for a winning layup by the opponent by catching the ball off the backboard and then he passed it to the point guard who scored on a fast break to win the game.

His favorite moment on the football field was when he ran a fake punt for a touchdown during a win which included jumping over a defender to score.
Dillard signed a college football scholarship to Western Kentucky, but the former running back in high school was switched to defense and special teams early in his college career. Nagging injuries forced him to Dillard had to quit the sport after his sophomore year.

In the meantime, he joined the Army a few years later, and he stayed there for two decades until he retired in 2004. He believed his sports career helped him make the transition to the military.

"My career prepared me for the Army because they were both physically and mentally taxing," Dillard said. "I was able to do a lot of things with ease because of what I had in high school and college. It really helped me out in the Army where other people were giving up and faltering. I was able to go further and it helped prepare me for the military experience."
Dillard goes down in Cannon County history as a two sport athlete and a natural born leader both on and off the field.

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