Branch hopes to make senior year memorable

Published 5:41 pm Saturday, July 28, 2018

With camps officially gearing up to start former Nansemond River standout, Marvin Branch wants to make an impact for his senior football season at Old Dominion University.

Branch started his football career at ODU as a walk-on, and after some hard work and patience, he was given a scholarship and given more time on the field.

Branch went into his junior season starting at linebacker where he finished with 97 tackles and led the team. Currently, he has 140 career tackles to go with 4.5 tackles for losses with an interception and five fumble recoveries. Now, as a senior, he is hoping to make his last season his best season.

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“I am feeling good about this year,” he said. “This is one of the best off-seasons we have had as a team a lot of guys got bigger, faster and stronger, so I am very excited.”

ODU finished 5-7 last season, falling one game short of being bowl eligible. Branch is hoping the work himself and his teammates have put in will help lead them to a conference championship this season.

If they don’t win a championship, they can still become bowl eligible, which Branch is hoping for as well. Being a productive veteran on the team comes with a lot of responsibility, and Branch knows that. He will be relied on heavily for leadership among the younger players on the team a challenge he embraces.

“I plan on sharing a lot of knowledge and ability with the younger guys,” he said. “Not even about just football but off the field as well and just life in general. A lot of guys come in and think it’s all just like high school. So being there for a teammate and helping them not make the same mistakes I did is something I’m looking forward too.”

Personally, Branch is looking forward to leading the team in tackles for consecutive years. He had a goal to break 100 tackles last season and slightly missed out. He didn’t reach his 100 tackles nor his All-Conference honor, so that has been something that has motivated him in his offseason preparation.

With Branch being a senior, he could potentially have an opportunity to play for the NFL or the Canadian Football League. If an opportunity presented itself, Branch said he would be open to taking that chance.

At Nansemond River High School, Branch was an All-District selection and was a standout defensively for the team.

ODU kicks the season off on the road against Liberty University Sep. 1.