BAKER — Dillon Nixon embodies the Baker Gator football spirit.
Standing 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighing about 140 pounds, the senior is a jack-of-all-trades. He plays wingback on offense, outside linebacker on defense and is a kick returner on special teams.
Dillon's roots run deep in Baker football history. His father, Steve, and uncle, Shannon, were members of two Baker state championship teams in the 1980s. Dillon's mother, Melissa Nixon Carter, cheered for the 1993 championship team. And Dillon is the latest in a long line of Nixon cousins who have followed in their fathers' paths.
“It’s a great opportunity to be a part of the Gator heritage,” Nixon said. “I just think it’s a blessing. I played with (cousins) Chris and Jacob a little bit, and maybe Logan some when I was younger.
“I looked at my cousin, Jacob, as my brother out there beside me. I would do anything I could to protect him and play for him. It was just a blessing to be able to play with my family here in my hometown.”
Baker Coach Matt Brunson — who played with Steve and Shannon Nixon, and coached many of the Nixon cousins — said, “The Nixon family has been synonymous with Baker (School). His aunt, Michelle, teaches here. The Nixon family is very ingrained in the Baker community.”
Family lines aside, Dillon is a fine player in his own right.
“He’s a very talented young man that we ask to do a lot of things, and he does them all well,” Brunson said. “He takes pride in the little things. He does a great job in the weight room and, therefore, he’s strong enough to do a great job blocking.
“He catches the ball well. He’s just an all around Baker Gator.”
Dillon says playing even Class 1A football at 140 pounds is a challenge he embraces.
“I just learned from Coach O1 (David Oglesby) it doesn’t matter how big you are — as long as you keep going full speed and hit the guy before he hits you, and you will be alright," Dillon said.
Brunson doesn’t expect to see any let-down now that Dillon is a senior.
“I expect him to do just what he’s always done,” Brunson said. “He’s had a great attitude. He’s worked hard.
“He’s done whatever he’s been asked to do, and he’s been a very unselfish team player.”