Hanson Middle Schooler earns Team USA Football opportunity
It’s not everyday that a local athlete has an opportunity to represent the town of Hanson at the national level, but this was the case for incoming eighth grader Maddox Colclough last month.
The Hanson Middle School student was selected to play for the USA National football team, Middle School Division. From there, he traveled to Canton, Ohio — home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame–to practice from July 2 to 7. He then took part in the bout between the U-14 Stars vs. U-14 Stripes as a member of the Stripes.
“It was pretty fun, but nerve wracking,” Colclough, who plays center, said of the experience. “I didn’t really know what it was going to be like.”
Players arrived early to check out the field and see what everything was like.
“I got comfortable with the team and there was a lot of kids who were a lot bigger than me there, so it was tough at practice and all that,” he said.
Not only did he earn the opportunity to play against some of the best talent the country has to offer for his age group, but he also had the opportunity to represent his state and hometown in the process.
“It was a really good experience,” Colclough said. “You get to see what the talent was like around the country, who the best were and where they’re from.”
One challenge the game offered Colclough was the size difference between kids from around the country. While playing for the Hanson Warriors of the Old Colony Youth Football League, Colclough must adhere to a strict weight limit where no player can start the season weighing over 165 pounds. However, Team USA football does not have a weight limit and there was a lineman from Kansas City, Mo., who participated and weighed 320 pounds, Colclough said.
Since the Pro Football Hall of Fame is in Canton as well, it goes without saying that Colclough checked it out.
“That was so much fun,” he said. “Me and my dad (Christopher) went and that was really fun and a cool experience.” Being on the field too was pretty fun. We also went into the downtown area and were able to do a lot there.”
Now, Colclough will turn his attention to the Hanson Warrior Division 4 Midgets team which will start practicing later this month. Their first game is on Sunday, Sep. 9 against Pembroke at Whitman-Hanson Regional High School (1p.m. start time).