Player of the Week: Independence High’s Brian Courtney

The Military Bowl Foundation and DC Touchdown Club are partnering with WTOP during the 2020-2021 high school football season to honor a Player of the Week. Read about this week’s Player of the Week below.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Brian Courtney, Independence High School

As the starting quarterback and star player on Independence High School’s football team, it would be understandable if Brian Courtney did not play defense to avoid the risk of injury.

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound junior, though, is not your average player.

So while he accounted for seven touchdowns on offense this past week — throwing four touchdown passes and running for three more scores — it can be debated whether his impact was greater on defense. Playing defensive end, Courtney had four sacks — including three where he stripped the ball and recovered it — as Independence beat Strasburg, 63-44.

Courtney completed 9 of 11 passes for 150 yards and four touchdowns, and he rushed 14 times for 201 yards and three touchdowns.

Brian Courtney accounted for seven touchdowns on offense this past week as Independence beat Strasburg, 63-44. (And as defensive end, Courtney had four sacks.) (Courtesy James Torrenzano)

On defense, he finished with seven solo tackles and two more tackles for loss. For his efforts, Courtney was named the Military Bowl DC Touchdown Club High School Football Player of the Week.

“I know that sounds like video game numbers,” Independence Coach R.J. Windows said. “He’s our best football player. A unique kid. Very humble, very quiet. He just gets the job done. This kid is just special.”

Windows said that he hesitated to play Courtney on both sides of the ball last year, inserting him on defense only when the Ashburn school made the playoffs. Windows noted that recruiting interest has sparked recently, with several perennial Top 25 teams expressing interest.

“The big ones have been calling this week,” Windows said. “It’s safe to say they are flowing in.”

Others receiving Player of the Week consideration were:

Frederick County

Linganore TE-DE Cole Mitchell made 12 tackles (five for loss) with three blocked passes and two sacks as the Lancers opened their season with a 29-19 win over Middletown. Mitchell also caught four passes for 64 yards.

Howard County

Oakland Mills quarterback Antoine Holmes rushed 26 times for 150 yards and three touchdowns, including the game-winning two-yard score in the final minute as the Scorpions beat Mount Hebron, 18-14. Holmes, who played running back last season, completed 5 of 8 passes for 81 yards.

Northern Region

South County quarterback Charlie Miska, a Virginia recruit, rushed for three touchdowns and threw for another score as the Stallions beat Robinson, 37-20.

Prince William County

Freedom-Woodbridge RB Julian Edwards rushed 20 times for 216 yards and three touchdowns as the Eagles beat Potomac (Va.), 54-0.

Southern Maryland

Patuxent QB Adam Commodore completed 6 of 7 passes for 158 yards and three touchdowns and rushed 10 times for 141 yards and two touchdowns as the Panthers beat Chopticon, 48-13.


St. John’s RB Jamar Curtis carried 21 times for 140 yards and two touchdowns and caught two passes for 67 yards as the Cadets beat St. Mary’s Ryken, 35-20.

Josh Barr is the director of external relations for the Military Bowl Foundation.

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