There are quite a few new Seahawks fans in Munday after the first round of the NFL draft.
At pick 29 in the first round, the Seattle Seahawks took former TCU and Munday Mogul defensive end L.J. Collier. This was the culmination of a lot of hard work and a dream his teachers from elementary school remember him talking about.
Like a lot of kids, Collier said he always wanted to be a professional athlete and his teachers said he used to pretend to be a pro when he would play football out on the playground.
“It has always been a dream of his,” fifth-grade teacher Mandi Brown said. “I believe it was Earl Blaik that said ‘the champion makes his own luck,’ and that is exactly what L.J. has done through his hard work and dedication and perseverance. He really just has come through and been able to achieve his dreams. Even as lofty as his dream was.”
His teachers said Collier has become a role model for the current students at Munday and not just because he is a great athlete.
“They look up to him,” Mundany Elementary Principal Kristi Bufkin said. “He is their idol and they are super excited I think it would be great if he could come back to school and talk to our kids and let them know you can obtain whatever you want.”
“I know he will cause he is a giver,” reading teacher Kim Kuehler said. “When he was at TCU and that first homecoming he wasn’t in high school, he came back and was in the pep rally skit and all that. He will always come back to Munday and take care of Munday. Take care of the kids here.”
They still have fond memories of Collier when he was at Munday.
“He didn’t like math. I had him in fifth grade and he did not like math. I had his dad on speed dial,” P.E. teacher Laci Bowman said.
“L.J. is a lot of fun. He is a funny guy,” Brown said. “He loves to joke around, mess around. He is loved by all his classmates from when he was in high school. He was just that guy that everyone wanted to be friends with because he was just so much fun.”
Everyone who knows Collier is extremely happy for him and proud of what he achieved.
“We are really proud of you L.J. Really proud,” Burfkin said.
“We are just so incredibly proud of you and we know that you are going to continue to live out your dreams. Everything is coming up L.J. right now. I am so excited. It’s a great day to be a Seahawk,” Brown said.
“It’s a great day to be a Mogul with an ex-Mogul as a Seahawk,” Kuehler said.
They also said a lot of people in Munday have already found out the closet game the Seahawks will have this year to Munday is in Arizona and some are already planning road trips to go watch Collier play.