“It is a real honor,” Wilkerson said. “I was kind of expecting it, but I am humbled by it. It feels good that I am being noticed for the stuff that I do.”
The junior had 253 all-purpose yards and five touchdowns to lead the Tigers from being down by double digits past Sylacauga, 35-30. Wilkerson had four touchdown catches of 14, 78, and 12. Wilkerson’s fifth touchdown of the game will be remembered as one of the biggest plays in their 66 meetings. Zach Lightsey’s pass bounced out of the hands of a Sylacauga cornerback’s hands into the hands of Wilkerson who sprinted down the right side line for the game-winning score. The touchdown gave Childersburg their first victory against Sylacauga in six years.
“It makes me feel real good,” Wilkerson said when asked about having a career day against rival Sylacauga. “Knowing that I put up some big points and big stats against Sylacauga, it doesn’t get any better than that.”
During the comeback, he also had to play quarterback for the Tigers. On that drive he had seven rushes for 48 yards and a touchdown.
“He does everything that we ask him to do,” Childersburg head coach Adam Fossett said. “He works his butt off in the weight room and on the practice field. It is good to see something like this happen to him where he has a ton of success in a huge ball game like he had on Friday. He is definitely a leader on the team. He does a good job on and off the field in his leadership role as well.”
Wilkerson said he finally got to reflect on his performance on Saturday. Fossett said watching Wilkerson make play after play in the clutch was incredible.
“It was pretty amazing to see,” Fossett said. “He definitely found some holes and found some spaces to get into. Zach made some good reads and found him open. Obviously, the last touchdown was a crazy play within itself. The defender made a great play on the ball. Frank took it off his deflection and was able to walk in. It was a big game for all of us. Frank is the type of guy that knows everybody had a hand in it and he was the fortunate one to score all the touchdowns and have individual success, but he knows the defense and special teams all came together to make it happen. That’s the best thing about it-it was a total team effort.”
The Tigers will have their toughest test of the season on Friday when Central of Clay County comes to town for a vital region contest. Childersburg (4-1, 2-1) are currently third in the region.
“We are expecting to be 3-1,”Wilkerson said. “We are having a good week of practice so far. We are having a really good season. We came out early and won some big games. We lost that one against Dadeville, but we didn’t let ourselves stay down. We came back that next week and we did what we do.”
Wilkerson said the team learned from their getting beat down by Dadeville in week four.
“Just knowing that everybody is probably going to be bigger than you, but that doesn’t mean you give up on what you’re doing,” Wilkerson said. “You have to trust in yourself and believe in your teammates. You have to believe that they are going to have your back and know that they are going to be there for you. You have to do your job, play your role and let everybody else do theirs. “
Wilkerson and the Tigers’ short term goal is to upset Central of Clay County on Friday. He also said they are looking forward to getting back to the postseason, but they know they have to handle their business on the field the next four weeks to make that happen.
“Our goal for right now is to beat Central of Clay,” he said. “The only thing that is on my mind is the next game. The next game is the most important game. As far as finishing our season, we are looking forward to the playoffs, but we have to finish the season. We can’t let up just because we beat Sylacauga. We have to show up to all the other games like that too. We have to play hard, put up some points and win some ball games.”
The 5-foot-9, 155 pound receiver has played football for eight years. He said he looks up to St. Louis Rams speedster Tavon Austin.
“He is an exciting player to watch,” Wilkerson said. “He inspires me, because he is small, he is not the biggest, he is not the strongest, but he works and he pushes his self. That shows me if I work and push myself I could be just as good as or better than him. It makes me work and it makes me want to work and push myself.”