An ambassador for Charlotte

Published 6:27 pm Wednesday, January 18, 2017

It is important for a healthy, thriving community to have good ambassadors, illustrating its strength through their character and work ethic as they benefit people and communities elsewhere.

It is people like these who can help someone who has never heard of Charlotte County to come to the understanding that it produces fine, upstanding individuals and citizens.

This is what was going through my mind as I began to write a story recently about former Randolph-Henry High School multi-sport standout Joe Reed. He had a fantastic freshman football season at the University of Virginia in 2016, and was named to the 2016 Atlantic Coast Conference All-Freshman first team as a kick returner.

I was greatly impressed by the high praise lavished upon him by Cavaliers Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall, praise that absolutely did not stop with his performance as a football player but highlighted his character, as well.

He described Reed as “exceptional in every way — great person, great student, exceptional player, and if my entire team was composed of Joe Reeds, we’d have an amazing program.”

His strong work ethic clearly got results on the field. In the whole Atlantic Coast Conference, he finished No. 3 in kick return average, averaging 25.1 yards in 27 returns across 12 games. He was No. 5 in total number of returns and No. 6 in return yardage with 678.
Combined with 77 receiving yards on four catches and a few rushing yards, Reed ranked second on the Cavaliers in all-purpose yardage behind the team’s senior tailback, Taquan Mizzell.

Provided Reed can avoid injury, Charlotte County should expect to have a strong ambassador on and off the football field at U.Va. for up to three more years, and who knows what may come after that. Perhaps even NFL coaches will be marveling at what Reed and Charlotte County can produce.

Titus Mohler is the sports editor for The Charlotte Gazette. His email address is