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Daniel Grant

“77′ is more than just a number for senior Colton Thomasson. It’s his identity. For four years, the star player has brandished “77” on his back, his chest, his helmet, and in his heart.

Touching lives

Senior Colton Thomasson leaves his legacy

Class.

Discipline.

Effort.

Tradition.

These four words, painted on the walls of the field house, are seen by hundreds of students every year, but they impacted senior Colton Thomasson the most.

Now, in his fourth season of varsity football, and on track to graduate early, the school already feels the effects of his legacy.

“He has a genuine care for others,” offensive line coach Robert Teuton said. “Because of that, people are quick to follow his leadership.”

Colton is known by many – students, teachers, parents and anyone else in the community. While his fame on Friday nights does contribute to this, most know him for his compassion.

“He’s not just a guy that when we do community service here says, ‘Yeah, I’ll do that,’” head football coach Larry Hill said. “He takes it a step further and goes out and looks for those opportunities, and that’s pretty rare. It’s infectious, and you begin to see other kids take the lead from that.”

Growing up, Colton’s parents set a certain expectation for him, and that was kindness. They continuously told him that “it cost nothing to be nice to people”.

“He’s really taken that to heart,” Colton’s dad and junior varsity football coach Jason Thomasson said. “I believe he’s nice to people, and it doesn’t cost him anything.”

Along with his compassion, Colton is known for his school spirit.

“He is not only a varsity football player, but has been a baseball manager and is seen at any and all sporting events showing school spirit,” senior Ty Stone said. “He’s in debate, is on the spirit committee and participates in Fellowship of Christian Athletes.”

While Colton leaves behind a community full of love for him, he joins one just as welcoming.

On July 31, 2021, Colton committed to Texas A&M University after getting offers from six other schools.

“I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders,” Colton said. “I was planning on going through the season and seeing what happens, but then I went on that visit to A&M. I saw the weekend and everything they had planned, and it made me realize that that felt like home.”

After he graduates in December, Colton will leave to join A&M football for the spring training season.

“I’m super proud of him for all he has accomplished,” Colton’s sister and freshman Carley Thomasson said, “especially knowing how hard he’s worked for it.”

The summer of his commitment, Colton lost 90 pounds after weighing 450 at the end of his sophomore year.

“I lost a bunch of weight to get where I’m at today,” Colton said. “The thought of going back there and how I got here really motivates me.”

His weight loss, however, is not the only driving force in Colton’s life. 

“I’m a devout Christian,” he said. “I love my religion, and it definitely drives me to want to succeed.”

Colton demonstrates that faith as he leads the football team’s weekly bible study.

“My faith means everything to me,” he said. “When I feel like there’s nothing left, it means a lot to know that I can turn to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

While Colton is excited for this new chapter of his life, he’s sad to leave his family behind.

“Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” he said. “My family has taken me to countless camps and put countless hours into helping me work on my craft.”

As Colton finishes his last months of high school, the community that has stood behind him these past four years prepares to say goodbye.

“They’ll talk about him for a long time after he’s gone,” Hill said, “not just what he did on the field, but what he did off the field as well.”

The reason for Colton’s impact on the school can be narrowed down to one thing – who he is as a person.

“I know football is where he intends to make his mark, but kindness is where he’s had the most impact,” English teacher Holly Leach said. “He touched lives more than he facilitated touchdowns.”

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