A glimpse into the life of a student athlete

School, practice, homework, group studies, teacher conferences are only a few of the many commitments required of student-athletes at Maryville College. It is overwhelming yet therapeutic. Of course, it’s grades first, but sports are a close second.

Being a student-athlete, you must meet all the standards that regular students are required to meet, on top of that, your coaches expect to see you excel and surpass those standards so you can be a leader around campus. It can become very tiring but rewarding once you can start to see your hard work and dedication pay off.

The therapeutic part comes into play when you are at practice, or in a game and your mind is strictly on your sport. Whenever I’m on the field nothing else matters to me, there is not an “outside world” or “homework” that crosses my mind. Its me and my brothers out on the field of play balling, making plays, getting the crowd hyped up.

The feeling that I get once I make a play is like no other. Its just like when you finally turn 16 and get your license and start driving, it’s something you never want to stop doing. When I make a pivotal play in a big game, your brothers, coaches, and fans surround you with love and happiness. This feeling places a smile on my face from cheek to cheek.

You get to thinking what’s next, or what can I do now to impact the game? It gives you the initiative to go harder because you want more. Imagine winning the lottery, and you have that lucky ticket in your hand. That is the same feeling one gets when you make a big play in a game. You feel like a king and nobody can take you off your throne.

Being on a team where nobody cares about the stats, and who makes the most tackles, touchdowns, or interceptions means a lot. We all play for each other and want everybody to succeed. The chemistry and charisma this team has is indescribable, it’s something that you’d have to feel for yourself.

“Playing football has taken my character to another level. The adversity, defeat, and mistakes have made me realize once you get hit in the face by life, you can let it drown you, or fight and preservere through.” – Jamal Ware

Playing on a defense that is performing at such a high level like we are this year is nothing but motivation to continue playing as good as we have. We have great players at each level of the defense, that all have the best interest for the team. Whenever one of my brothers makes a play, the 10 other players on the field corral him and congratulate him.

Something that I think that has given us the edge that other defenses don’t have is the fact that we sort of compete against each other to see who will make a big play first, then to see who can match it or top it. Although it may seem as if we are competing against each other we really are not just adding more fuel to the fire that we play with.

Even though fans only see the results on Saturday’s, the way we prepare and throw our bodies around during the week in practice helps us be as good as we are.

Playing football does more than anybody can imagine. America’s sport is the ultimate team game, whereas everybody has to be on the same page or disaster will happen. Trust, communication, love, and dedication are only some of the components that are valuable for a team to have success. Those four components are also relatable to life and you should use them in your everyday life.

I walk my daily life ready to overcome any obstacles that are set ahead of me because football has taught me trust, love, communication, and dedication are a part of a family. (F) forget (A) about (M) me (I) (L) love (Y) You.

The scots are set to play Berry College in Rome, Ga. on November 17 for the first round of the NCAA playoffs.

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