Who he is…
Head football coach of Connecticut’s Stamford High School.
Where you’ve heard of him…
You probably haven’t.
Bryan Hocter may be built like an aging linebacker, but the head coach of Stamford High School’s football team is tackling more than football strategy. He’s making sure his team is fed.
“During a practice, after a game, we’ve had kids collapse. Some have been hospitalized,” Hocter said. “One kid went the whole day without eating and collapsed in the shower. We had to call an ambulance.”
Connecticut’s poverty rate is (surprisingly, to us at least) one of the fastest growing in the country. With about 75 percent of his team going without regular meals, Hocter’s began a letter campaign and solicited donations from the local community. “The coaches got together and said, ‘Let’s do what we need to do because these kids have no gas in the tank.’” They estimated that it would cost about $2,200 to feed the forty-five players on the team for the duration of the football season.
“If I could be confident that all our kids are eating, I would be able to focus more on the X’s and O’s of the game, and not be wondering, ‘Am I pushing too hard? Did he eat enough today?’” the coach said. “We want to win as much as anybody, but we also want to take these kids under our wing.”
(…for our “not man of the day,” click here.)