The oldest of five, Julius grew up in Portsmouth, Virginia and was raised in a single parent home by his mother. “Growing up, my mother was the biggest influence in my life. She had to work very hard to raise me and my siblings and I think because of that, it made me realize just how blessed I am. That’s a big reason why I feel like I have to make the most of any chance I have to give back to the community,” remarked Julius when talking about his upbringing.
“I always tell kids that no matter where you are and how hard you work, there’s always someone out there working harder than you so it’s important that you get better everyday. When I’m not playing football I always like to make an effort to go to schools or talk to kids. I want to be a positive influence on whomever I meet and wherever I go.”
In his senior year at I.C. Norcom High School Julius was an All-State Honorable Mention. After high school he attended prep school in Concord, North Carolina at North Carolina Tech in 2007 where he was part of a team that won a Prep School Championship. From there he enrolled at Shaw University where he was a four year starter dominating the competition. His leadership in college was most evidenced in Julius being named the team’s captain in both his junior and senior seasons. Being named a captain as an underclassman is a rarity in college athletics. Given that, Julius prides himself in his unselfishness, character and being a team leader. Perhaps that’s the reason why he strives to do the little things to help his team win - like blocking. “I was always taught that there’s more to playing wide receiver than catching the football. You have to look for any opportunity to extend the play including blocking for your teammates. I like to be physical every play.” He currently holds records in both career and season touchdown totals while leading Shaw in winning three Conference Championships.
“My future aspirations are to better myself on and off the field. My faith is also very important to me. You have to have faith and believe in anything you do.”
Julius is a winner in life first and in football second. For as much talent as he has, his faith, humbleness and team player mentality are what really stood out to me. I must say getting a chance to talk to the man Under the Helmet was very enlightening. His passion of wanting to give back to the community, volunteering his time while encouraging young people are all special characteristics that make this great football player a man of character as well. He added these remarks when talking about his team, “It’s because of the other seven guys on the field working hard that I flourish; without them I wouldn’t be as successful as I am.” So far this season Julius has caught 13 touchdowns for almost 500 yards as he continues to be a prime time performer. With his unrelenting work ethic and extraordinary talent, there’s no question the sky’s the limit for Julius Gregory.
Written By: Euan McCreath