MAMARONECK, N.Y. Parker Thelander was a football and baseball standout during his Mamaroneck High School athletic career, which led to a major decision.
The recent Mamaroneck graduate had to choose which sport he would continue playing in college football or baseball. Thelander said the decision was not difficult, and he will attend Hobart College and continue playing football.
Baseball has always been a love of mine, and I had an amazing four years playing with all of my friends in the Mamaroneck baseball program and I am very proud of what we accomplished, Thelander said. Football is my passion, and there is so much about the game that captivates me that it really made it an easy choice.
Thelander had an excellent senior year in football, leading Mamaroneck to the playoffs. He was a dual threat for coach Anthony Vitti, either completing passes with pinpoint accuracy or running the ball. Thelander said something clicked during his senior season.
As the year progressed, playing the game became more instinctual, and the speed of the game slowed down for me, said Thelander, who plans to major in business or economics. It was really the first time in my career where I wasnt going out and just playing.
I was understanding what defenses were trying to do, even more so, I was seeing plays develop, and I understood what we had to do as an offense to score points and win games.
Along with excellent academics and a serene campus, Hobart drew Thelander with the football program.
Hobart runs a pro-style, spread offense, which is very similar to the offense that we ran under coach Vitti this year, Thelander said. The quarterback is in the shotgun most of the time, and it is a very up-tempo game with plays being called at the line of scrimmage. I feel my style fits right into what Hobart does offensively, because the quarterback needs to be precise in his rids and get rid of the ball quickly and accurately.
Thelander understands that coming in as a freshman and winning a starting job will be difficult, but he understands the situation, especially after talking to Hobart head coach Mike Cragg.
When I spoke to coach Cragg, he emphasized that he expects his players to be excellent students, and also give everything they have on the field, Thelander said. As far as expectations go, he didnt say whether he envisions me starting this year or next year, but no matter what, that does not change my mindset. I am going to go in and do my best to outwork and out-perform my competition and give it everything I can to win a starting position.
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