Two Austin seniors lock up their football future
Feb. 1 – It was a day of celebration for the Austin football team as an undersized wide receiver with a big heart and an injured coach’s son redirected his path, both signed their National Letter of Intent to play college football in Austin. High school Wednesday.
Manny Guy committed to Division III at the University of Minnesota-Morris and Tommy Fritz committed to NAIA Dordt College.
Both players left a big impact on head coach Ed Schmitt, who started as head coach every freshman year.
“Manny was a small wide receiver, but his heart was huge for us. There was a day last year when I was a little depressed and Manny pulled me aside and asked if I was going to well. He said he was there for me and for a young man to do that for a coach, I will never forget that,” Schmitt said. “I’ve known Tommy for a long time with his dad who was on staff and it must have killed him to sit there and watch when he was injured last year. He’s a hard working kid and he’s strong and fast.”
Guy has used his quickness and speed to stand out on the football field as he has become a big game threat for the Packers over the past two seasons. He always thought about playing football at the top level.
“I just kept working,” Guy said. “Coach (Tom) Compton helped me get to where I am right now and he taught me the little things to be a good wide receiver. I’ve always wanted to play college football and I watched football since I was little. I’m just happy to have the chance.”
Fritz came to the Packer sports scene as a wrestler, but an injury in his sophomore season derailed his momentum in the sport. Then he was distracted again when he suffered a football injury as a junior.
“I was really good at wrestling and once I got injured in my second season I wasn’t really able to wrestle anymore. It’s kind of mind blowing for me now,” Fritz said. “I had a thought in my head during rehab if I was even going to be able to play my senior year of high school. Now I’m going to play college football. The hard work has paid off.”
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Guy and Fritz also had to play during the COVID-19 pandemic during their development years, which cost them playing time and practice time. It hasn’t slowed either of them down and they’re both happy for each other as they take it to the next level.
“Since Manny started playing he’s always been competitive and he took it to the next level when I got injured,” Fritz said. “I saw that drive in him and we kind of pushed each other this year. It’s really exciting to see him working hard.”
Fritz had 583 rushing yards and four touchdowns with 219 receiving yards and three touchdowns last season. He also had 61 tackles and one interception for a score.
Guy caught 18 passes for 419 yards and six touchdowns.
The Minnesota-Morris Cougars went 5-5 overall last season and the Dordt Defenders went 7-3 overall.
Dordt is located in Sioux Center, Iowa.