1-on-1: with Bryan Williams

Story by Sara

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You transferred to Baker from Glendale Community College, how many years did you play there?<strong>You transferred to Baker from Glendale Community College, how many years did you play there?</strong> You transferred to Baker from Glendale Community College, how many years did you play there?

I played two years at Glendale.

What made you decide to transfer to Baker?<strong>What made you decide to transfer to Baker?</strong> What made you decide to transfer to Baker?

Because of family. I am like the 10th member of my family to go to Baker or something like that. I have my sister out here and my little cousin, so I wanted to come see them and be part of my mom’s family, who still lives in the Overland Park area.

What is it like to carry on the family tradition of being a Baker legacy?<strong>What is it like to carry on the family tradition of being a Baker legacy?</strong> What is it like to carry on the family tradition of being a Baker legacy?

It’s cool, but it’s really no different than I think just playing with good friends or anything like that. I don’t think of it as being a legacy here technically, even though Emil Liston Stadium is named after a relative and all that. It’s cool knowing that I had family play here, but it’s just great to be part of a good program, and hanging out with coach Grossner and a good coaching staff. It’s a blast to be a part of whether I was a legacy or not, they are great people to be with.

What has the transition to Baker been like?<strong>What has the transition to Baker been like?</strong> What has the transition to Baker been like?

Academically, a little bit tough, but not too bad. Getting used to Kansas was a lot different. Driving through corn fields on an 18 hour drive was a little bit weird. A little bit weird being away from family. But being at a small school, like Baker, is just like being back at home in Arizona, and so it really has a lot of the comforts of home.

Game wise, what is the difference between playing at a junior college and the NAIA?<strong>Game wise, what is the difference between playing at a junior college and the NAIA?</strong> Game wise, what is the difference between playing at a junior college and the NAIA?

Well, talent wise, they are very similar. Juco’s have a lot of great talent, a lot of guys that go on to play Division I ball. So talent wise, there is not a big drop off at all. But the great thing about being part of an NAIA program and a four-year school in general is that you really get a chance to be part of a family. A Juco is merely a two-year stepping stone for all of the athletes. Here it’s really more of a family and you get a lot more bonding time and you get a lot closer to your teammates.

What is that family bonding experience like at Baker?<strong>What is that family bonding experience like at Baker?</strong> What is that family bonding experience like at Baker?

It’s great. There are a lot of good guys out here. A great guy in Steven Stewart, that luckily came over to kick for us this season after dominating every other sport on Baker’s campus. It’s a blast to be with him and it’s a blast just to be close with those guys throughout. Myron Tipton, my longsnapper, is a great kid, and I am going to enjoy being with him next year. Also carrying over some of the family stuff from Glendale, coach Grossner was a Glendale Gaucho and that’s how he found me. Andrew Augsburger, our tight end, was also a Gaucho with me. So having them come out here is a nice way to transition.

Have you always been a member of the special teams?<strong>Have you always been a member of the special teams?</strong> Have you always been a member of the special teams?

In high school, I was a quarterback and linebacker. Quarterback was my thing, tore my shoulder my senior year, went to a Juco hoping to heal up and play again, but had to go through another couple surgeries and the doctor said ‘no more.’ So I asked my dad to teach me how to punt. So he taught me as much as he could before my first year out at Juco, and punted ever since and it’s gone pretty well for me.

Do you prefer punting or would you rather be at quarterback?<strong>Do you prefer punting or would you rather be at quarterback?</strong> Do you prefer punting or would you rather be at quarterback?

I would rather be at quarterback, but my arm just can’t do it. And I love punting, it has given me an opportunity to extend my playing career.

How long did it take you to pick up punting?<strong>How long did it take you to pick up punting?</strong> How long did it take you to pick up punting?

It took a little while, but I had done a little bit in high school with my dad. Never took it seriously at all, but once I knew that was my only option to stay on the field, I took it a lot more seriously. It was a tough transition playing seven plays a game instead of being out there all the time, and it’s definitely something you have to get used to; never being in a rhythm. You sit on the sideline for 45 minutes, then you got to go out and do your thing. But it’s fun, it’s an adrenaline rush. You sit there and you just wait for your shot and you want to take advantage of it.

Baker has two bye weeks back-to-back, do you think that will serve as a positive or negative for the team?<strong>Baker has two bye weeks back-to-back, do you think that will serve as a positive or negative for the team?</strong> Baker has two bye weeks back-to-back, do you think that will serve as a positive or negative for the team?

I think it can do both. As a negative, you can get too relaxed or sometimes you get a little bit out of shape during the bye weeks or something like that. But as a positive, it really lets you heal up. We’ve been a really injured team since early on in the season, and so I think it is going to fare very well for us. The weather has been great, which is a plus, so we can actually get out there and get productive practices in. So I think it is going to go very well for us heading into our last three weeks of the season for the playoff push.