Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sumner Star Comes from Football Family

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sumner Star Comes from Football Family

Article excerpt

Edwin Dotson is a football player with family ties to gridiron greatness.

His uncles are former Sumner High standouts Ben and James Cowins, and his cousin is Anthony Cowins, who starred at wide receiver for the Bulldogs in the late 1980s.

Another uncle, Carl Dotson, was a contemporary of Ben and James Cowins at Sumner in the 1970s. Edwin's brother is Tony Dotson, who was an all-area defensive back at Sumner when it made successive appearances in the Missouri Class 4A championship title games in 1989 and '90.

Edwin is a senior free safety at Sumner, but he doesn't want a free pass to stardom. A starter since he was a freshman, he wants to pull his own weight.

"I worked very hard to get that position as a freshman," Dotson said. He and teammate Deandre James, a defensive tackle, both started as freshmen for Sumner in '91, the season the Bulldogs capped a 13-1 campaign with a 52-8 victory over St. Joseph Benton for the Class 4A championship.

Edwin, 6 feet 2, 180 pounds, has many of the athletic trademarks that highighted his brother, Tony; cousin Anthony; and uncles Ben, James and Carl.

He is physical, fast and confident.

He also is high on the list of major-college recruiters. Dotson has received letters from a host of schools in the "Big Ten, the Big Eight and a lot of the SEC (Southeastern Conference) schools," he said. "Just about everybody."

Some observers compare Edwin to Tony, who was superb on the prep level.

"He weighs more than me," Edwin said of Tony, who was highly recruited, signing with the University of Louisville before transferring to South Carolina State.

"We're about the same speed. I may have a step or two on him, but we're both very quick."

Sumner defensive coordinator Richard Perry goes a step further.

"If you're going to play defensive back, you have to be able to make contact," Perry said. "Dotson is a good open-field tackler. He's a good coverage man and he will hit you."

Sumner head coach Lawrence Walls shuns comparisons.

"Len (Edwin) hits well, he covers well and he has good speed. But his brother Tony was awfully good, too."

Edwin Dotson alternates between safety and cornerback, depending on the defensive scheme. …

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