High Five: Panthers captain discusses line on the line

Published 5:32 pm Thursday, September 28, 2023

Northside senior lineman Tate Gibbs joined the Panthers for his sophomore season. The 6’3 285 lb. Hyde County resident gets a waiver to play at NHS after starting his career at Mattamuskeet HS, which has since moved to 8-man football. Gibbs has grown up around football and you could say it’s in his blood.

  1. Your grandfather, Steve Shankweiler, was the offensive line coach at ECU and other schools for a long time. What influence has he had on you with football?

Tate:  He’s the reason I love football. He’s helped me to understand the game and what I need to work on my whole life. We talk all the time about what I did well and what I need to work on after almost every game. He was an offensive line coach for a long time and has been a huge help to me in every area.

  1. When did you start playing football?

Tate: I started playing for the Belhaven Bulldogs in the rec league when I was eight. I’ve been on the line most of time, but I played quarterback in 8th grade at Mattamuskeet Middle School. I told Coach Boyd that I played quarterback when I got here, but he just laughed and put me on the line. It’s worked out just fine.

  1. Being an offensive lineman isn’t exactly a glamour position. What do you like best about it?

Tate: It might not be glamourous, but it’s very important to our success here at Northside. We are a run-heavy offense, so it’s on us as linemen to create the hole for the runner to go through. When we do our job, we run for a ton of yards and usually win. (421 yards in last week’s blowout of Martin Co.)

My goal is for both running backs to get over 100 yards every game. It feels great to make a big block to get them into the open field.

  1. The Anchor Bowl is next week. You lost to Southside at home last year and they took the trophy. What are your thoughts on that rivalry game?

Tate: We don’t think we should have lost last year and are ready to get the trophy back. It’s a very important game every year, but more so this year because we lost. It’s more fun to win on their field, because the crowd is quiet and leaves disappointed. It’s at their field this year, so we will definitely be ready to play. Getting off to a good start is key. We’ve done that in the three games we’ve won and struggled early in both losses.

  1. Do your plans after graduation include playing college football?

Tate: I sure hope so. I’ve had an offer from UNC-Pembroke and have talked to Wingate, Catawba and Limestone (S.C.). I’m going to visit them later in the fall and I’ll have a better idea after that. I’d like to be a coach or an athletic trainer later on so I can still be around football.