Carter, Coaching Staff Named for Highlander Club Football Program

Brandon Carter
Brandon Carter

Brandon Carter has been tapped as the head coach for Gordon State College’s club football team. The college announced in February that it will begin competition in Fall Semester 2020 in the National Club Football Association (NCFA).

Carter was born and raised in Atlanta, and played attended Lakeside High School. He went on to play wide receiver at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga where he studied Business Management. Before joining Highlander Nation, Carter spent six years honing his coaching skills at various levels and most recently was the head coach at Community Christian College (CA). Gordon State is excited to have a coach with both passion and experience leading our Highlanders to victory in the seasons to come.

“I am honored to become the head coach of club football here at Gordon”, Carter said. “Coaching is my passion.  I understand the commitment that has been made on behalf of the College and the expectation and responsibility that lie on my shoulders. The coaching staff and I look forward to building great character and work ethic in the classroom as well as on the field.

“We will play physical, smart and with respect.  Everyday our goal will be to be better than the day before. Our ultimate goal is to change lives through football.  At the end of the day everybody wins.  We will produce better fathers, husbands, alumni and citizens.”

Club football is an 11-man, full-contact football league competing at the collegiate level. Unlike traditional intercollegiate sports, however, club teams are not funded by the institution’s athletic department. The GSC club football team will operate under the direction of the Office of Student Life and Recreation. Students interested in participating will pay an annual fee, and the team will also raise money through sponsorships and donations.

Supporting Coach Carter is Assistant Head Coach and Running Backs Coach, Wayne Niles. Coach Niles is a retired Army First Sergeant, and has coached every level of football from recreation up to intercollegiate military. Niles’ leadership and experience will make sure that our Highlanders represent the highest level of skill, sportsmanship, and leadership on the field and on our campus.

Commanding the Highlander defensive front is Coach Kevin Adkins. Coach Adkins was a 4-year starter for Valdosta State University. He was a Two-time All-Gulf South First Team selection helping his team earn a 2004 NCAA Division II National Championship. Adkins has coached a top-10 ranked defensive unit at Point University (GA), and left Community Christian College (CA) to join Highlander Nation.

Along with Adkins and Niles, Coach Carter has recruited a full roster of experienced coaching staff to help lead the Highlanders to victory on the field, on campus, and most importantly, in the classroom.

Football Operations: Oscar Hines

Coach Hines will be assisting with game-day operations and preparations. He will also serve as a traveling recruiter constantly on the lookout for top prospects. Hines played high school football at Lithonia High School, and has coached football and track since playing. Academically, Hines went on to graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Bethune-Cookman University and received his Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Grand Canyon University.

Offensive Coordinator/ QB Coach: Nick Trist

Coach Trist has been a full time coach at the collegiate level for the past five years, including two championship runs and a national championship as offensive coordinator with the Middle Georgia State University club football program. He also coached at Palmetto Prep Academy and at Allen University. Trist earned his Associate of Arts from Gordon State College and then went on to graduate from Middle Georgia State University with a Bachelors of Arts in History. Trist played both basketball and football for Groves High School in Savannah.

Offensive Line / Special Teams Coach: Christopher Knox

Coach Knox is a native of Barnesville, Ga, and played his high school football at Upson-Lee High School in Thomaston, Ga. Knox played offensive line and long snapper for Coach Tommy Parks and Justin Elder and was honorable mention for special teams in 2017. Coach Knox is currently enrolled as a biology major at Gordon State College and will coach offensive line and special teams for the Highlanders.

Wide Receivers Coach: Ben Kennedy

Coach Kennedy followed Coach Carter from their previous school, Community Christian College (CA), where he was the defensive backs coach. Kennedy saw this as a great opportunity to help Carter build the football program here at Gordon State College. Kennedy played football at Heritage High School in Rockdale County where he contributed to their nationally ranked defense in 2013. He chose to pursue a collegiate career in track and field at Troy University (AL), and went on to receive a Bachelor’s of Science in Broadcast Journalism while minoring in Philosophy.

Assistant Running Backs Coach: Paul Parker

Coach Paul Parker played football and track at Morehouse College from 1995-2000. He was second team All-SIAC as a running back in 1996. He was a two time All-America in track, helping the Maroon Tigers win four straight conference titles. Coach Parker has extensive leadership experience. He coached football, basketball, and track in Baldwin County from 2007-2010. He was the running backs coach at Hancock Central High School from 2003-2006. Coach Parker was the assistant basketball coach in Wilkinson County from 2011-2017 winning the GHSA boys state championship in 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

Defensive Line Coach: Walter Duke

Duke has coached many sports from recreation level all the way to the high school level. He played football and basketball from a young age all the way up through his military career. He has earned an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Southern Crescent Technical College, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from St. Leo University. Duke is also pursuing another degree in Nursing.

Linebackers Coach: Courtney Daniel

Coach Daniel will mark his collegiate football debut here in Highlander Nation. He has coached high-school and semi-professional level football. Daniel played all four years of his collegiate career at Fort Valley State University, and went on to play professionally in the Arena Football League and the Canadian Football League. While at FVSU, Daniel worked to earn his Bachelors of Art Degree in Criminal Justice. Coach Daniel also works in data technology and is the owner of a successful vending company.

Assistant Secondary Coach: Patrick Ssebulime

Coach Pat played football in Griffin, Ga, where his performance earned him the honor of being selected second team All-Region, as well as All-State honorable mention. He is currently enrolled at Gordon State as a Business Administration and Management major and will be working with Coach Carter and Coach Niles prepare our defensive backs for the season.

“On many campuses, club sports play an important role in student life by providing a more competitive option than intramurals, but without the cost of the intercollegiate programs, said Dr. John Head, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs. “Students have been asking about football for some time, and it is one of the most requested programming options we have had. Club football is a great option, allowing us to meet the needs of our current students, offer a sport that is of interest to prospective students, and provide an activity that we feel can draw fans from Barnesville and across the region.”

The Highlanders will play five games at home and four away games in their nine-game inaugural football season.

The 75-player roster is open to any Gordon student to try out. Dual-enrollment students interested in playing club football as a Highlander, may apply to be on the team on their Gordon State application. Current students interested in joining can email the Office of Student Life and Recreation at

For the full schedule and additional Club Football information: