It’s 5:30 a.m. and the alarm sounds. The snooze button is left untouched because there’s no time for that. There’s just enough time to shower, eat and then face the cold for his six o’clock run at the gym.
“You want to quit every day, but you would be cheating yourself of something great. It really is for the love of the game,” says number 69 of the Concordia Stingers, Alex Kollar.
It’s now later on in the day and Kollar is once again signing in with his coach at the gym. Besides running three times a week in the morning, the Stingers are expected to work out in the gym whenever they can.
Today, his chest and shoulders get their work out, but by the end of the week his whole body will have had its fair share of “feeling the burn.”
“People think that we don’t deserve to be in university. That we’re only here to play football,” says Kollar as he puts on his football gloves.
Kollar does spend a lot of his time training for football. After reading week he started practicing everyday. When the season starts, practice will be five days a week, games on Saturday and finally Sundays to recuperate.
Football is a big part of Kollar’s life, but it’s not his whole life. His primary goal is education. He hopes to be a lawyer when he graduates.
“I consider one goal at a time. In football you never know when things will change, it’s a injury prone game.”
“I want to clear the name of football players,” he says as he finishes his last butterfly press.
“We’re not the womanizing, partying jerks that we’re stereotyped to be. Some of us could be, but it’s not most of us.”
Football players do have a status in the school. But it’s not all fun and games because playing for a team that is third in the nation and one level below the CFL involves a lot of pressure.
“When your mistakes are seen by 20,000 people, it takes a toll on your self-esteem.”
If Kollar has ever felt down, you could never tell by listening to his teammates who describe him as the team’s clown. Kollar even goofs around when he’s injured, but ready to tackle the opposing quarterback when he should.
Twenty-five minutes of cardio is finished and Kollar is off to the showers and then rushes off to class. No time to waste.