Jordan offensive lineman Brenden Fitzgerald knew football could help him chase his life goals. On Thursday, Fitzgerald took the next step in that pursuit.
Fitzgerald committed to Webber International University in Babson Park, Florida, on Thursday after visiting the school on Wednesday. The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Fitzgerald spoke about his decision and how Webber International’s persistence helped him with his decision.
“They were really the only ones who reached out and kept in touch,” Fitzgerald said. “They kept talking me and trying to convince me to come see them. Once I went down there, it made me want to be there.”
According to Jordan head coach Justin Newman, Fitzgerald brings all the necessary tools to allow him to thrive as a Webber International Warrior.
“He’s got size and knowledge,” Newman said. “He’s a very good offensive tackle. He’s a left tackle that’s got the knowledge of a center. If you’ve watched any football, the center’s barking out orders just like a quarterback. He’s got that, and he’s only been playing left tackle.”
The scholarship offers more for Fitzgerald than just a chance to play football. He explained his goal is to study criminal justice and become a police officer when he finished college. He spoke to several players with the same major and was impressed with what they had to share about the program.
Fitzgerald said he has been driven to become a policeman for about three years now due to experiences from his own life.
“I’ve dealt with a lot of family problems,” Fitzgerald said. “I’ve had family with drug problems and all types of stuff like that. It makes me want to be a cop to help stop problems with what I dealt with.”
Newman applauded Fitzgerald’s drive, noting that he had no idea what he wanted to be when he finished high school. He said that type of drive was evident on the practice field each day, as Fitzgerald used it to maximize his effort.
Newman, whose first season at Jordan was Fitzgerald’s last, said Fitzgerald was a player he never had to win over. Fitzgerald was on board from the beginning, which made the transition much easier for Newman and made Thursday’s moment even more special.
“I’m excited for him,” Newman said. “Any chance we have for a kid to go and continue their career and get an education paid for, man, that’s awesome. In this business, that’s what it’s really about.”
Fitzgerald said the trip to Babson Park took about seven hours, but the distance wasn’t a cause for concern. In his eyes, Webber International offers a chance to move past those difficult times from before while also taking on new opportunities.
With football still on the horizon and a career path starting to become clearer, Fitzgerald sounded nothing but excited about what’s to come as a Warrior.
“I’m just looking forward to a new chapter in my life,” Fitzgerald said.