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Anthony McMaster

From the Tennis Court to the Football Field

by Nicholas Humble

November 30, 2009 – Standing 6’2” and weighing 200 pounds, AnthonyAnthony McMaster McMaster, senior quarterback at Loyola, has not always been the star quarterback he is today. He only began playing football after a natural disaster changed his dominant sport upon entering high school.

McMaster was a dominating tennis player before high school. “Before I started playing football, I was a big tennis player and would travel all over the nation,” McMaster said. “I got to be number one in the state and was one of the top players in the nation.”

When Hurricane Katrina hit, he quickly changed sports from tennis to football. “I was scheduled to play a big national tournament, and after Katrina hit, everything in Louisiana fell apart, and that’s why I picked football up,” McMaster said. “At the level I was playing, I couldn’t do both. I’m really glad I made that decision, and I haven’t looked back since.”

 

McMaster believes tennis really helped him become the quarterback he is today. “I feel that I have been successful at quarterback because tennis helped my footwork out a lot,” McMaster said. “The way that I throw the football is from the serving motion from when you play tennis, and my throwing motion is pretty good.”

When he started playing football upon entering high school, he was a natural. “I have been playing football since freshman year. They just tried me out at quarterback, and I have always been able to throw.”

Now McMaster is trying to model his game after his favorite athlete on his favorite team, Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints. “I would have to say Drew Brees because he’s not much of a runner, and I don’t run as much,” McMaster said. “I feel that his strength is picking defenses apart, and he’s a good decision maker with the football. That’s what I feel my strength is.”

Anthony McMasterMcMaster likes football mainly for his position. “It’s the position I play, quarterback. I like being the leader of the team, and I was really a big leader this year for our team. I like the pressure of the quarterback position; I like the spotlight on me and having to become a clutch player.”

His most memorable game came during his junior season. “The most memorable game would be when we played Red River. There were four minutes left to go, and we had to win this game to make a run in the playoffs. If we didn’t win it, we would be a 32 seed playing John Curtis,” McMaster said. “We’re down seven points, and I threw a pick six, and there were about three minutes left to go so we pretty much thought we lost the game. We got the ball back, and on fourth down I threw a 51-yard touchdown pass. We got the ball back when they fumbled, and we came down and scored and ended up winning in overtime.”

Although McMaster would love to play in the NFL and would definitely take the offer if it came, his dream job is to be a coach. “If I got the opportunity, I would definitely try that, but my dream job would be to coach at a D1 football program and build up a program if the NFL doesn’t work out.”

McMaster is a charming individual who looks for the positive characteristics in people. His leadership and quarterback intelligence will assist any team for which he plays. “I would bring leadership, and definitely at the quarterback position the smarts,” McMaster said. “I am nonstop watching film, and I know just about every defense I have ever seen.”

After having the opportunity of playing tennis, McMaster realizes how much he enjoys the game of football and believes it is a true team sport. “On the tennis court, you’re lonely out there, it’s a one man sport,” McMaster said. “That’s part of the reason I love football so much, having a team, and being able to lead them.”

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