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May 11, 2012

Fisher drummed his way to football stardom

MORE: Five-Star Challenge | Underclassmen Challenge

Holland Fisher takes a lot of pride in being a high-energy player. The nation's No. 7-ranked safety often marches to the beat of a different drummer.

Sometimes, that drummer is Fisher himself.

"I love playing drums," he said. "I played all through middle school and wanted to be in the marching band in high school but I never could march because of football."

Fisher now focuses on football at Midlothian (Va.) Manchester but grew up in the Lancaster (Va.) High district and thought his future would be in the stands not on the field.

"Lancaster had a great band," he said. "Really, they were great, and I had rhythm. I wanted to be in that band.

"They really got the crowd hyped and I am always trying to fire people up. I am the hypest guy on the field."

Come June 22-24, Fisher will bring his energy to the field of Lakewood Stadium in Atlanta for the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge but not to fulfill a dream of playing the drums in the Dirty South but to compete against the best players in the nation.

The No. 72 overall player in the country is already committed to Virginia Tech but says that this trip to the invitation-only camp is a chance to prove his doubters wrong.

"I hear them all the time," Fisher said. "There are a lot of people who say that I am overrated, I hear them, and I am going to show them they are wrong.

"They say I don't have ball skills and they say I can't catch so that's why I have to play safety."

At 6 feet 1 and 202 pounds, with a 4.5-second 40-yard dash, Fisher has the measurements that all colleges would want from his position.

According to Fisher that is not enough; he wants to silence his critics.

"It doesn't make me feel bad or anything that they are out there," he said. "But it does push me. I try to take their negativity and make it a positive for myself."

His first step in that process is hitting the camp circuit hard.

Fisher is one of the most active, highly rated players on the summer tours. He says that the competition and chance to be out on the field is the only way to get better.

"I do a lot of camps," he said. "I try to take something, even the smallest thing, from every camp I go to."

His latest camp, the Rivals.com/VTO Sports camp in Virginia, he took home exactly what he went for: an invitation to the inaugural Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge.

"Getting to go to the big camp was the main reason I went to that VTO camp," Fisher said. "I knew Rivals would be there and I wanted to get my invite.

"It was very special. I earned my invite on the spot. After the camp they told me they wanted me to come and I couldn't stop smiling."

Now that Fisher has accepted the challenge, he is hard at work preparing to be his usual high-energy self.

"I want to get there and get the other players energized," he said. "I want to win that 7-on-7 and I think getting everybody else excited about it will help get us there."

Mike Farrell's take

Fisher is a big, physical kid who could grow into a linebacker if he wanted to but has good coverage skills as a safety. At the Rivals.com/VTO Sports Virginia camp he was excellent and was the best we've seen him at when it comes to coverage despite playing out of position at times at cornerback. He has good instincts and he hones in on the football well and closes strong. His ball skills are better than advertised but he's looking to show that they are a strength at this event. He's one of the most physically gifted safeties around and certainly passes the eyeball test so this should be a great event for him to showcase those skills against some big receivers.



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