Butler doing his part: GSC wideout has 17 TD receptions

Photo courtesy Glenville State College Glenville State College junior wide receiver Javon Butler is expected to play a key role for the Pioneers this fall after hauling in 17 touchdowns during his first two seasons.

GLENVILLE — From the time he first set foot on the gridiron for Glenville State College, wide receiver Javon Butler has produced.

After helping his East Rockingham High School team finish runner-up his senior season in 2017 at the 2A Virginia state track and field meet, it was off to the Pioneers and Gilmer County.

All the state champion long jumper did in his first start for the G-men that fall was burst on the scene with 128 yards receiving on three touchdown catches against UVa-Wise.

Needless to say, the 5-foot-11, 195-pound junior for first-year GSC head man Mike Kellar is more than anxious to get this season underway.

“Coach Kellar, I mean, he actually recruited me when he was at Lenoir-Rhyne at one point,” admitted Butler, who followed up a 39-catch, 609-yard and nine touchdown freshman campaign with 50 grabs for 825 stripes and eight scores last year despite missing three games.

“We’ve got a little connection right there, but really, he’s going to change the program. I can just feel it. We’re going up. This coaching staff I feel like is going to make us mesh really well together. Offense and defense-wise we are all going to build a bond.”

In the second game of his sophomore year, Butler torched Mountain East Conference champion Notre Dame for career-highs of 12 catches and 187 yards.

However, the next week against Shepherd he suffered an injury and proceeded to miss games against Alderson Broaddus, W.Va. State and Concord.

“It was the Shepherd game and I scored,” recalled the health and physical education major. “I was going into the end zone and I pulled my hamstring unfortunately.

“Right now, it’s fully healthy and I’m 100 percent ready to go.”

This past spring, Butler finished third at the MEC track meet in the long jump, was fifth in the 100 and ran the anchor leg on Glenville State’s runner-up 4×100 team.

“Spring ball was very good,” Butler added. “I was with track a lot, but doing football as well. I had a lot on my plate. We have a good young core coming in, mainly sophomores and juniors, not a lot of seniors.

“Our offense, overall, we’re going to be able to put some points on the board. I feel like that’s one of our strengths. We have a good defensive front and a good overall defense and I think they can make some stops.”

He’s also excited to see how the offensive line develops.

“You know, what I see out of that group is a competitive edge,” stated Butler. “We’ve got some big guys and some tough dudes who just have the grit to win.”

MEC coaches aren’t expecting the G-men to win too much this season. However, Butler isn’t the least bit concerned about being picked to finish seventh in the preseason poll.

“Our mindset this year, I’d say the key word is probably effort,” he said. “What we talked about all spring was more effort.

“That’s all we needed. I feel like this year we can surprise some teams and finish in the top half of the MEC.”

Contact Jay Bennett at jbennett@newsandsentinel.com