CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- With an undergraduate degree in hand already, Brennan Armstrong's class load is pretty light in his fifth-year at Virginia just as he prefers.

"I really, truly do not know what I'd be doing," Armstrong pondered about a life without football, "It could have been the military. It could have been right into work. I really do not know if it wasn't for football."

Luckily for Brennan Armstrong, UVA fans and the sport of college football, Armstrong was born and raised in Shelby, Ohio, a small town of 9,000 with a love for football.

"We're a very small community, but a very close knit community," Brennan's mother Heather Armstrong said.

"We're a football town," Brennan's dad Brent chimed in.

"Definitely a football town," Heather nodded in agreement.

Shelby is roughly an hour away from Columbus. Almost a ritual in the town, every Friday night for the better part of 100 years fans in Shelby would gather at W.W. Skiles Field, which just hosted its final game two weeks ago.

"It was was a spotlight every Friday," Brennan said, "And what more could you ask for? Especially a little little town like Shelby, people gravitated to that spot."

Known as 'Big Papi' on the baseball field growing up, an imposing southpaw on the mound, Armstrong started football in middle school and in a town like Shelby he was no secret.

"He was too big to run the football," Brent laughed, "Because he was, he was always kind of a bigger kid. Taller and stuff. They had to check his weight and stuff. Make sure he was able to run the football."

Brennan's high school coach at Shelby Erik Will remembers distinctly the first time he saw Armstrong, shortly after accepting the head coaching job when Brennan was in eighth grade.

"I went down to our football stadium and watched him play, I believe it was on a Tuesday in late August," Will said, "He's like nothing I've ever seen before. Here's what makes him unique is number one. He's a lefty. You just don't see a lot of lefties throwing the ball. And but you don't see his ability to take off and run like he was able to do at that age."

The legacy of Armstrong only grew as a freshman starting quarterback for Shelby in one of the greatest high school football games in Ohio history, one that ended in an 83-82 loss against Tiffin Columbian.

"It was a blur, honestly," Armstrong said, "I specifically remember we were getting beat up pretty bad. People started leaving. Then we somehow started to come back."

"We were down 22 points in the fourth quarter," Will said, "We were down 22 points. We almost had a running clock against us. Brennan just kept leading that offense."

The game let the secret out of the small Ohio town as recruiters from all over made their way to Shelby in the years following. One Big Ten coach even called asking if Armstrong was considering playing defense.

Of course Armstrong would originally commit to Minnesota, before decommitting and choosing Virginia despite offensive coordinator Robert Anae and quarterbacks coach Jason Beck showing up late for the home visit after stopping on a back road to help a woman with a broken down car.

"People were saying 'wait a minute, who's this kid in small town nowhere that's putting up just unbelievable numbers," Will said.

The same tenacity on the field shows up everywhere in Armstrong's life from bursting through multiple defenders on the goaline to even a school presentation on Pete Rose. Some of the facts are still stuck in his head.

"I still remember, I think his birthday is April 14," Armstrong recalled on the spot.

"In fourth grade he had to do a presentation, his first one in front of the class and he did it on Pete Rose," Heather said, "And he'd have to start over every time it wasn't perfect. And it just went on and on and on. And finally I'm just like, I can't take this anymore. Like we just had to walk away take a break. We went got ice cream."

The same desire for perfection grew with Armstrong and followed him onto the field.

"I still have that in me, obviously just because I expect perfection, you know," Brennan said, "But yeah, it's still there. I just think those things, they're my mistakes and something that I can control."

Despite the record-breaking numbers a year ago -- UVA school records for total offense, passing yards and touchdowns in a season -- only two stick with the perfectionist in Armstrong: six and six, their record.

"It's just average, no one wants to be average," Armstrong said, "My whole life I really try not to be average. I always just try to push to be the best at something."

As much as the excitement grew for Armstrong's on-field accolades, his parents knew the team's four-game losing streak to end the season ate at Brennan.

"The bottom line is that Brennan it's all about the wins," Brent said, "You know, that's what that's what really killed him."

"Like he said this year, he's coming back he's going to win, it's all about the wins," Heather agreed.

Those two numbers are largely the reason Armstrong is back at Virginia for another season, along with the connection made with new head coach Tony Elliott, who Brennan's parents say brought a similar energy to his high school coach.

"I just want Brennan to win because that's what he came back to do is to win and be the best version of himself," Tony Elliott said, "And hopefully the offense will allow for him to be able to break those records."

"Normally when I'm at the helm of something either with whether I was on the mound in baseball or being a quarterback, I felt like there was always good things that were happening and we had a lot of good things that happened, but just the record didn't show that," Armstrong said, "So I just want to leave this place better and have that feeling that you know, I did something I changed something. We all did something, we changed the culture of UVA."

Armstrong refers to himself as a kid from a small town in Ohio and has represented Shelby in front of thousands on Saturdays.

"We have a lot of kids who go on to play college football, but very few people are playing on ESPN, throwing 500 yards," Will said, "That doesn't happen in Shelby, Ohio where you have that. So he really does represent the 10,000 people that are in this community. And I'm telling you this, there are probably per capita way more TVs in Shelby that have five on it have UVA on than probably in Charlottesville."

"It shaped me for who I am," Armstrong said, "I was a lucky one and I get to kind of carry that a bit into this bigger stage, Shelby is right with me, I'm the one that gets to carry it."

All that's left for Armstrong now is to win.

"Coming back from Charlotte going to Charlotte wherever that may be and then we're just waiting around for you know our bowl game," Armstrong said, "Coach Elliott brings that. I think the potential on any team in the ACC has that ability to go to Charlotte. It's just who's going to come together and be unified and stick together throughout the whole season."