CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – After Horace Greeley senior Brent Lobien took home his prestigious National Football Foundation Golden Dozen award last week, he took time to reflect back on the past four years and what the recognition means.
“The Golden Dozen award is truly an honor to receive. But what it means to me is really the culmination of a lot of hard work throughout my high school career,” he said.
“I have worked extremely hard in the classroom, in the weight room, and on the field, and this award is really a token of all that hard work and effort I put in,” he said.
The Westchester Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame announced its 2012 Scholar-Athlete Teams during its 40th annual awards banquet at the Westchester Country Club on Jan. 31.
One of the highlights of the night, the Golden Dozen award, was an honor bestowed on the county's top 12 senior athletes who not only excelled on the field - but also in the classroom.
“Obviously, schoolwork and football are very different,” said Lobien. “Succeeding in the classroom is really about staying on top of your work and making sure you learn material. It is clearly a very cerebral process, and it really trains your mind to think and learn.”
Lobien said football requires a different type of work ethic. “Succeeding in football is almost entirely based on preparation,” he said. "To be successful you definitely need talent, but what separates players is the amount of time they spend preparing. There are a million and one things you need to do to prepare to play football, and if you skip any part of your preparation, you will fall short.”
Lobien also noted that academics and football do share common ground.
“Where education and football cross over is their emphasis on hard work,” he said. “Teachers don't just hand out grades, just like the other team isn't going to tackle themselves. In both school and football, you have to work hard. That is what this award is all about.”
Lobien added that his favorite thing about high school football was the relationships he made with his teammates.
Currently in the midst of selecting a college, Lobien said he hopes to make an official decision soon. He adds that he's looking forward to keeping football part of his college academic and social experience.
“A whole new phase of my life is coming up. I'm really excited to make new friends and grow as a person,” he said. “Football is the greatest game in the world, and I am so lucky to have an opportunity to keep playing the game I love. I know a lot of guys my age who would love this opportunity. I'll make it count for them.”