Dick Harmon: Brandon Ogletree embodies spirit of BYU defense

Published: Sunday, Nov. 11 2012 8:00 a.m. MST

Ogletree’s parents knew their son was gifted but didn’t imagine he’d deliver in high school like he did. Then came college, and he made good on a childhood dream. Ogletree’s idol was former Cougar and Indianapolis Colt linebacker Rob Morris. After every game Morris played, Mark and his young son, only a kid, would sit down and replay BYU games and go over every play Morris made. They’d talk about what he did and break down how he did it.

Brandon Ogletree wanted to play like Morris someday. He wanted to follow him at BYU, play his position, make plays, make a difference. It is because of Morris that Ogletree wears the No. 44 on his jersey.

Ogletree signed to play for the Cougars but didn’t enroll until he served an LDS mission to Chile. Fast forward to Saturday night against the Vandals, it is no fluke Ogletree has led BYU’s defense in tackles the past two seasons.

“I never knew Brandon would do anything beyond high school football, then he made all-state in Texas. Then I thought, ‘wow, he has a chance to do something in college,’ ” his dad said.

Many believe this 2012 Cougar defense may be one of the best in school history. To lead this defense in tackles is a very big deal. Symbolically, Ogletree, a team captain, is the heart of Mendenhall’s defense.

And Saturday, he led BYU’s defense like he always had, full-bore, full-speed and without hesitation.

It was only fitting that Ogletree’s two flag football coaches, his father and Shreeve, were in the stands to see it end in Provo.

Dick Harmon, Deseret News sports columnist, can be found on Twitter as Harmonwrites and can be contacted at dharmon@desnews.com.

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