Behind the Scenes With Steven Gilmore


BJ Davis, Contributor

With flowing dreadlocks and a 5-10, 160-pound frame, South Pointe High School senior wide receiver Steven Gilmore (3) spends most of his autumn Fridays blazing by opponents with the speed of a cheetah and the focus of a hawk locking in on its prey. Never fazed by anything he sees on or off the field, Gilmore has quietly become one of the stalwarts of a powerhouse team and one of the most sought after high school players in the country.

Head Varsity Football Coach Strait Herron said, “On the field, he’s one of those deceptive kind of players that you don’t realize how good he is until he gets the ball in his hands and is wide open and running. His speed is incredible and he can make cuts to get open and make plays. Steve is also a great person off the field because he is very quiet and you can trust him to not get in trouble.”

Gilmore celebrates after scoring a touchdown.

Gilmore is contemplating where he’ll play collegiately. His top four schools are South Carolina, North Carolina, Louisville, and Georgia.

Gilmore is a valuable asset to South Pointe’s offense. His quickness and route-running skills make him a consistent deep threat for quarterback Derion Kendrick.

Steven is the brother of former South Pointe standout, Stephon Gilmore, who plays for the New England Patriots. As Stephon received accolades and national attention for his play in high school, Steven saw him as a typical big brother.

“With him being highly recruited in high school, there wasn’t anything fantastic, it was normal. He was really cool, he always kept my head on straight,” Gilmore said.

The brothers approach the game in similar ways, from their ball awareness to their lightning speed.

Steven is undersized compared to Stephon back in his high school days, but Steven consistently turn heads with his play.  

When Stephon played with the Buffalo Bills, Steven had a personal view of his brother fulfilling his NFL dream, one that Steven hopes to accomplish, too.

Stephon inspired what Steven considers his best game at South Pointe in last season’s state championship game.

“My brother texted me and said ‘ball out,’ so I had no choice but to turn up,” Gilmore said.

With his parents in attendance, Gilmore torched Hartsville’s defense with six catches for 110 yards and three touchdowns, as the Stallions overwhelmed Hartsville 51-28 to claim their third straight state title.

As Gilmore prepares for the next stage of his football career, Stephon continues to motivate him. Before the season, the two spent nearly three weeks working out at gyms and fields across Charlotte, perfecting their craft together.

Gilmore won’t be spending his college days at his brother’s alma mater, the University of South Carolina. At the beginning of Gilmore’s junior year, the school made him an offer, but Gilmore continued his recruiting process. When Gilmore was prepared to commit to USC, all their slots at cornerback were filled. If the opportunity opened up for him today, Gilmore expressed uncertainty about a commitment to the university.

Gilmore has a heavy burden on his shoulders as he continues his recruiting process. Now that South Carolina is out of the picture, North Carolina may end up landing one of the best defensive backs in the state.

Gilmore runs the ball into the endzone.

He is currently ranked first in the state for defensive backs despite the fact that his primary position on Friday nights is wide receiver.

Gilmore took an unofficial visit to Chapel Hill to watch the North Carolina versus Louisville game Sept. 9. North Carolina possesses a man-to-man defensive scheme Gilmore sees himself equipped for.

As the Stallions end their non-region play, Gilmore plans to quietly plow through South Pointe opponents and lead his team to yet another state crown.