Mothers are probably the most important part of a student-athlete’s life, especially when it comes to a son.
Growing up, my father worked long hours and was unable to make it to most of my sporting events from youth football and baseball up until high school. But there was always a constant in the stands—my mother.
After running a mile or two-mile race, I would look to the seats and there was mom. She didn’t care that I finished 12th or even slowed to a walk in certain instances.
I can remember a ninth grade basketball game that I finally got into at Scott Memorial Middle School in Wytheville. Time was running out, or maybe it was 30 seconds left in the game, it didn’t matter to me. I shot the ball from near mid-court. It didn’t go in and we lost by three points.
I also remember when I dropped an easy pass in sixth grade football. I was devastated, but there was mom in the stands that just put her arm around me and said good game son.
This is sometimes more important than anything else to a youngster, especially as they continue their athletic career. I didn’t get to experience that much personally in high school, but I have seen others and how their mothers played such an important role in their lives.
Over the years, I have also seen the athletes that I have covered and how they’ve reacted with their mothers.
Auburn mothers took this to an extra step recently with the creation of “Moms of Fall,” a poster that included moms and their sons wearing their football uniforms.
Mari Perry, a Riner photographer and football mom, played the role as quarterback on this project pulling moms together and twisting the arms of their sons to take time out of their Sunday afternoon to take the photo.
“We wanted to express the love and support that we have for our Auburn boys and it was a fun project to help promote and show how important family is to Auburn football community,” Perry said.
One player even gave up movie time with his girlfriend to pose with his mom.
Perry said she was approached with the idea by another football mom, and then collaborated with James Perkins to take the picture.
Jessica Chestnut was another one of those moms who posed with her football playing son. “We wanted to show our support for them and take a pretty cool photo at the same time,” she said.
The end result is something they will always have. Thanks moms.
This year’s Pigskin Picks ended like last year.
Randy Hall retained his Pigskin Pick championship belt dominating the competition this season. Myself and Leigh Anne Henderson finished second and third. Greg Holbrook was fourth and Brad Epperley held up the rear in last place this season.