Making an impact

Kaylah McClellan, Sports Editor

 

Football was everything that freshman Harry Ballard ever knew growing up as a child. Playing in little league since he was 7 years old and for a junior football league in middle school, football has been his main passion. Now at 15, Ballard is the first freshman to ever start in the three decades coach Schottmueller has been guiding the program.

“I don’t just like football; I love it,” said Ballard. “It keeps me in shape, focused on my grades, and I love to score and watch my team score. I just love the game period.”

Scoring is something Harry Ballard does well. He leads the team in having the most points with 10 touchdowns. He’s a 6-foot-2 wide receiver that has 512 receiving yards.

Most freshmen that receive this much glory for having these types of stats would be very big headed and full of themselves. However, that isn’t the case for Ballard.

“He’s a very unselfish player. On the field he is very mature for his age and he plays above his skill level,” said teammate Kyrton Kilgore.

Coach Schottmueller agrees by saying Ballard’s “football IQ is very high. He is very coachable and picks up on things very quickly.”

This talent didn’t come easily. Ballard describes putting in hard work with his father on a daily basis.

“You have to work hard to get to where you want to be,” Ballard said. “My father helped me get there and although I sometimes cried, I knew it would help me in the end.”

Ballard is the first freshman to start on varsity in all of the 28 years Schottmueller has been here. There have been nine NFL players out of McCluer North and even they didn’t start on varsity their freshman year.

“It feels great to be the first, it feels like a privilege,” said Ballard.