NuNu Campbell Adds to Holland Hall’s Defense
By Mike Moguin
GTR Sports Writer
A key moment in Holland Hall’s victory in the Class 3A state championship last year was when defensive back NuNu Campbell intercepted a pass early in the game. The Dutchmen would go on to rout Lincoln Christian 35-7 in the final.
“It was huge. It was so early in the game, it just really set the tone for us as a defense and kind of gave Lincoln (Christian) the idea that it’s not going to be easy,” Campbell said. “They had a good receiver, Kolbe Katsis, and we shut him down. We had to let them know that we can play good football just as much as they can.”
In the 2020 season, Campbell (6-0, 175) made 47 tackles, including 22 solos and 5.5 for losses, four interceptions and eight pass breakups. As a wide receiver, he had six receptions for 138 yards and one touchdown. Another pick came in the semifinals against Stigler.
“Offensively, we had a really good quarterback (Wallace Clark, now with OU baseball) and a good receiver (Marc Gouldsby) and the connection between the two was surreal. On top of that we had two other receivers who were just as good. With three good receivers, the team as a whole had the goal to win it all, it was easy to put up numbers. We all want the same goal, vice versa for defense. When you put it all together and make sure everybody has the same goal, the same mentality, the same mindset, it’s easy to go out on the field and do what you want to do on Friday night.”
Campbell reflects on how the moments felt when the last second ticked off the clock in the last year’s state championship game and the gold ball became theirs.
“When you’re out there on the field, it is 11 guys on both sides. Plus, you have more players on the sideline cheering for you,” Campbell said. “So at the last second of the game, you don’t want to do anything but think about what it took to get here, thinking about the hours spent at practice, watching film, studying, perfecting the craft, it’s a brotherhood. You want to let your guys know that we did it and we got what we came for, and we’re not looking back regretting being here. “
Last year, Campbell started on defense and substituted for Gouldsby as a wide receiver. However, with Gouldsby having graduated, Campbell is in the role as a two-way starter this season.
“It just lets you know that the team needs you more and now you have work to do,” Campbell said. “You have to step up to the table and do what you have to do.”
As for the college level, Campbell has offers from Tulsa, Kansas, Utah State and Washington State. He is also looking at UTSA and Ball State.
“It is definitely exciting. It can get overwhelming, depending on how you handle things,” Campbell said. “It is a process you have to do a lot of thinking about because the decisions you make in this process in picking schools are for the next four years.”
Can the Dutchmen repeat as Class 3A champions in December? Campbell believes so.
“It’s a challenge every year trying to build a team and get back to the mindset to what we were last year,” he said. “We have a young quarterback ready for the challenge whom I trust in and whom this team trusts in. We’ll figure out the way to get it done and that’s what the offseason and practice is for, to prepare. I’m ready to see our team take on another challenge and see about doing this thing again.”