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Memory provides extra motivation for Meisner
His white-and-maroon jerseys conceal the memories.
When senior quarterback Eddie Meisner leads the Wolves onto the field during today’s season opener at Vancouver College High School in British Columbia, he will be honoring his older brother.
Meisner will don a blue T-shirt — the color of his brother’s alma mater, Bremerton High — and a picture.
Brian Scott Huber committed suicide in June 2006.
“He was more my inspiration than anything,” Meisner said. “He was my big brother. He was such a great role model and I always looked up to him.”
South Kitsap coach D.J. Sigurdson lauded Meisner’s maturity. Meisner and fullback/linebacker Kaleb Nelson are the Wolves’ captains this season.
“He’s definitely had more responsibility than the average teenager,” Sigurdson said. “Eddie definitely has responded every time that’s been the case.”
No position receives more scrutiny than quarterback — even at the amateur level. That particularly was the scenario last season when South used four signal-callers en route to its fewest wins since 1977.
“When stuff gets bad a lot of people tend to go downhill,” Meisner said. “Our job as quarterbacks is to keep composure and keep building up our team.”
Meisner completed 19 of 33 passes for 350 yards, three touchdowns and one interception last season. The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Meisner also saw time at running back and wide receiver. He finished tied for second on the team with 11 receptions for 128 yards and two touchdowns.
Both Meisner and Sigurdson agreed that do-all approach was beneficial.
“He has a really good grasp of what everyone is doing on each play,” Sigurdson said. “He really understands the offense well.”
The Wolves scored the fewest points (181) last year in the eight-team Class 4A Narrows League en route to a 3-7 record. Meisner said he spent the summer with classmates Eric Burk and Aaron La Deaux in addition to junior Devon Newquist to work on developing timing with the wide receivers.
“We don’t want to have another season like that,” Meisner said. “We’re going to work hard for every single thing.”
Sigurdson said he noticed Meisner’s competitiveness when he played basketball at Marcus Whitman Junior High. It has continued not only as a quarterback at South, but in wrestling, where Meisner competes in the 215-pound weight class.
Meisner’s competitiveness and stature remind Sigurdson of the late Tony Fein, who played quarterback for the Wolves in 1999-2000 before he became a standout linebacker at Ole Miss.
“He’s kind of a throwback quarterback,” Sigurdson said. “He’s a big, physical, strong kid.”
Meisner, who has played quarterback since he joined his first flag-football team at age 4, said he has received some recruiting attention from Central Michigan, Eastern Washington and Portland State. Wherever he ends up, Meisner said he wants to major in education with a focus on history. He hopes to coach high school football someday.
But he said that is a conversation for the future. For now, he wants to focus on this season, which might be his last opportunity to compete in front of his family. In addition to football and wrestling, Meisner hopes to be a shot putter on the track team this spring.
“I’m a mama’s boy,” he said. “I love my family and spend as much time as I can with them. You’ve only got one family.”