Don’t blink

Your Elder football career will be over faster than you think



Elder tradition of running onto the field.

As a kid, I went to Elder football camps every year.
photo by Craig James
As a kid, I went to Elder football camps every year.

1. God

2. Family

3. Elder Football

Growing up, all I thought about was Elder football. My mind was set from day one that I belonged out there in the Pit. As a grade school kid, I would go to the games dreaming of making a big play in front of 10,000 screaming fans.

I would sit over at the “Elder house” watching the team warm up, and say to myself, “Man, I cannot wait to be able to throw those jerseys on that say ELDER across my chest.” When that day came, I never imagined it coming to an end.

“Elder football was something I dreamed about since I was a little kid and now that is over, it’s something I wish I could do all over again,” Peyton Ramsey told me.

The friendships and memories from Elder football are just a few of the aspects that mold boys into men. It is a brotherhood that understands the big picture. Of course everyone wants to be the big play maker, but we all know our roles and realize the power of the team.

“Elder football players may not always be the most talented but they win games. You want to know why that is? It’s unselfish, tough-nosed football that lasts all 48 minutes. Every player I’ve ever played with or seen put that jersey on has played that way. That’s what makes Elder so special,” said 2016 cornerback David Heisel.

The memories and friendships I made have changed my life forever. Peyton explained how the one thing he’s missed more than anything are the guys in the locker room.

“You can’t find anything like the Elder football experience. I love those guys,” he said

“Elder football means the world to me. It’s a family that will stand by you no matter what. It is a support system like no other, I will miss most the everyday interaction with the guys that turned into my brothers. Elder football turned me into the man I am today,” said senior linebacker Lucas Downey.

Elder punt team walking as a pack to hear Coach Eisele's call.
Elder punt team walking as a pack to hear Coach Eisele’s call.

Elder football is more than a game, it is a way of life. It means everything to people, not only because of the friendships, but because it is the greatest experience in the world.

Now that the season is over I find myself a little lost. I know it’s only been a couple of days but when you invest your whole life into something like Elder football it becomes part of who you are. I knew it wouldn’t last forever, but I’m just in shock that I’ll never make it out there again.

Now it’s time to explore new options, but I can be sure, no place will feel like home as much as playing Elder football.

I can promise you that come next August, the lights will come on for football at The Pit, and a new group of brothers will get to experience some of the greatest moments of our lives that I have just concluded.

Thank you to the Panthers of Elder’s past for giving me the passion to follow in their footsteps, and forever be an Elder Panther. Thank you to all my teammates and coaches for making the past four years the most memorable seasons of my life.

I wouldn’t have wanted to spend my time with anyone else.