Ellison Eagles defensive lineman Brendan Bett is continuing his education and his athletic pursuits down the road at Big 12 power Baylor University.
The District 4-5A Defensive MVP was emotional during a signing ceremony Thursday in the school gym as he celebrated with family members and a group of admiring teammates.
Athletic Coordinator and Head Coach Danny Servance said the two years he has shared with Bett, the defensive standout has been tremendous, one of the best he’s seen in 28 years of coaching.
“He can do it all,” Servance said, noting that Betts is a team captain, a leader on the field, is coachable and always gives total effort.
After signing his letter, Bett called from the stands his teammates, who joined him, congratulating the lineman on his achievement.
“It means everything, it’s something I’ve dreamed of since I was a kid,” he said of committing to play college football. “I’m just excited. I can’t explain how excited I am.”
An Alabama native, Bett moved to Killeen with his family as a high school freshman and said Ellison welcomed him.
He called his teammates his brothers and said they forged a bond through hard work.
“I grinded day in and day out,” he said. “I made sure I was doing everything I could to get better. That pushed my teammates as well. They worked just as hard as I did.
“Our bond has always been special. I don’t look at them as teammates. I look at them as brothers.”
Both Servance and Ellison Principal David Dominguez pointed out that athletes who continue to the college level invest years of work in their sport and in academic pursuits to reach that level.
“It’s not overnight and it’s not by accident,” the principal said.
“This is the result of years and years, not just working hard, but going the extra miles. It’s a long process.”
Family members sacrifice and encourage, classmates, teammates, teachers and others come alongside for support, he pointed out.
“This is an example,” said Dominguez, “of doing more than you have to do.”