Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

McDonalds

Wilder Uses Sports To Leave Lasting Impression On His Athletes

Sports hold a valuable place in many people’s hearts. The experiences and lessons built from sports are unique and leave a lasting impression. From being a young athlete to a wise coach, Fredericksburg High School’s head football coach Bill Wilder learned core values and lessons from sports. The head coach of varsity football now hopes to show his athletes how to become great men through their athletic careers. “I played football and track in high school,” Wilder said. “Football was my favorite without a doubt. I loved everything about playing football.” Wilder’s passion for the game was obvious. His work ethic and determination carried him well. “I liked the team part of it, the physicality, the competitiveness, everything about the game,” Wilder said. “From off-season, to practice and games.” He was first-team all-district as a linebacker for two years in a row. He then earned first-team all-greater Houston his senior year. Wilder’s success and love for the game caught the attention of colleges. But, it wasn’t all uphill for Wilder. “I ended up breaking three vertebrae in my back senior year, and I had two knee surgeries – one during the season,” Wilder said. But these hardships didn’t stop Wilder from playing the game. He was so committed to playing he had surgery to remove cartilage from his knee on Saturday and played in the game that next Friday. “By the time the season was over, I was real beat up,” Wilder said. “Schools no longer wanted to offer me scholarships. They offered me the opportunity to walk on and earn one, but, at that stage, I knew I couldn’t play at a high level like I needed to.” So, he gave it up. For a long time, he hated the game. He eliminated it from his life, but then little by little football crept back into his life. “I missed what football is,” Wilder said. “My struggles with it confirmed my love for the game.” After some thought, Wilder called his dad to converse about switching his major to coaching. His parents were very supportive, and that’s when it was confirmed. Wilder was going to pursue coaching. Wilder followed in the footsteps of his former coaches. “My middle school coach, Joe Brashear, was the guy who taught me the most about relationships,” Wilder said. “The way I coach is the way he coached me.” Brashear coached Wilder hard on the football field. Then off the field, Wilder and Brashear had a strong relationship and enjoyed being around one another. “Another coach who had a huge impact on me was David Sparkman,” Wilder said. “He was a real strong Christian man. A disciplinarian.” Sparkman was a role model for Wilder. Wilder admired his core values and was grateful when Sparkman would impact his personal life through Fellowship Christian Athletes. “As a coach, I hope that my athletes would learn the value of discipline, hard work, being selfless, that character counts, and doing hard things,” Wilder said. “To learn how to push through and have some toughness about you.” He believes that these qualities are learned skills that are a necessity to transitioning into a man. He encourages his athletes to not take the easy way but to instead push through and do what is right. Through this, he believes you’ve earned respect. “When a kid earns my respect, I don’t think they understand what that means to me,” Wilder said. “I respect them as a player and a young man.

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