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Alumnus takes talents to professional level

unnamedCourtesy Brian Casey

Since graduating from FC in 2003, alumnus Brian Casey has gone on to play professional football in Europe, most recently with the Allgaeu Comets.

Brian Casey, ’03, continues to play professional football in Europe

Professional athletes are born out of Fresno and Clovis area high schools every year. However, in the long history of FC, only two alumni have gone on to the professional level.

Brian Casey, ’03, who played varsity campus football, took his talents all the way to the professional level: Indoor Football League and European Football League.

“Fresno Christian doesn’t have a huge sports program like a lot of these schools in the vicinity,” Casey said. “The school does well, but compared to these other Division I schools like Clovis North, you don’t get a whole lot of notoriety. I never expected that I would be able to go as far as I have.”

Considering he graduated 12 years ago, many probably did not get the honor of watching Casey play in his high school years. However, Bible teacher and former football coach, Robert Foshee, recalls coaching for Casey on those cold Friday nights.

“Casey was a real athletic kid,” Foshee said. “He played wide reciever and corner for JV, but was brought up to varsity his sophomore year to play corner. He was a strong leader on the team and always made big plays on defense. I’m pretty sure he received All-League three years in a row.”

After graduating high school, Casey, who played at the linebacker position, went on to play his collegiate career with Azusa Pacific University. While attending college there, he obtained his bachelor’s degree in Physical Education and graduated in 2009. He went on and later graduated with his Masters, in Science in Physical Education and Sport Science, in 2012.

“I had wanted to play ball in college, but did not think that I would have the opportunity because I went to such a small high school,” Casey said. “I decided to send out my highlight videos just to see what would happen and Azusa Pacific responded. I did pretty good throughout college, but it was my performance at the Senior All-Star Classic, my senior year, that got my agent’s attention. He contacted me and showed me my options and that is how I got started in Arena Football. After having recieved my Masters degree in college, though, it really made me wish I had put more effort into acedemics in high school.”

His first season at the professional level was with the arena football team based in Odessa, Texas, the West Texas Roughnecks. He played with this team for two seasons until he made the switch over to European football in the 2011-2012 season.

“After I got done with arena, I could have still played with them if I wanted,” Casey said. “I also had some tryouts with Canada and the NFL, but Europe really stuck out to me. I went there and played for the Allgaeu Comets and I have loved it ever since.”

God has played a major role in my life. I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for him. He has been my driver and directed me on the right path. As I said, I never would have thought that I would have taken football to the professional level and, if it weren’t for him guiding me, I never would have made it. I realized at an early age that I just needed to trust in him and let him take control, and he has taken pretty good care of me up until this point. — Brian Casey, ’03

Having gone to a Christian high school and Christian university, Casey has a real love for God, who, he believes, has blessed him with the talents that he possesses. Casey expounded upon how God has influenced his career and life choices.

“God has played a major role in my life,” Casey said. “I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for him. He has been my driver and directed me on the right path. As I said, I never would have thought that I would have taken football to the professional level and, if it weren’t for him guiding me, I never would have made it. I realized at an early age that I just needed to trust in him and let him take control, and he has taken pretty good care of me up until this point.”

After having played football since middle school, Casey has had a great number of highlight moments. He shared what he thinks is his all-time greatest moment on the field.

“In college, we played West Texas which is a huge school,” Casey said. “In that game I had an interception that I returned to the house. It was amazing going from playing high school football for Fresno Christian over at Clark Intermediate School, to getting booed by 50,000 Texas fans for returning a pick-six.”

While football is Casey’s true passion, he does not necessarily plan on playing the game for the rest of his life. In the off seasons he returns to California to coach the game that he loves.

In the past, Casey has coached football at both California Lutheran University in southern California and Clovis North High School. Casey explains how he would like to make coaching into a full time career when he is done playing.

“I actually figured out that I wanted to be a football coach when I was here at Fresno Christian,” Casey said. “I coached the girls’ powderpuff team. I got such a joy out of watching people, especially women, pickup a football and learn how to play through us teaching them. That’s when I really realized that enjoyed coaching and seeing how people learned to do things from me and my skills. I majored in physical education so that when I am done playing, I can become a coach somewhere.”

Throughout his career, Casey has racked up quite a few honors. Just a few of these honors include; two-time Euro Football League Champion in Serbia and Germany, EAC All-Star LB for Team Europe, German Football League South Defensive Player of the Year and many more.

Casey will return to Europe again next season to continue his professional career. His is currently a free agent but this alumnus takes talents to professional level overseas.

Gary “Papa” Schultz, former campus principal, felt it was important to interview Casey and tell his story. Schultz believes that students who read about Casey’s accomplishments can take home valuable lessons about achieving their goals.

“He (Casey) is one these alumni who really has a success story in that he struggled some in high school with academics,” Schultz said. “He had to work very hard and it was really fairly difficult for him. He was so determined, though, that he went on to college and got his B.A. and then his Masters Degree. He has really done some remarkable things with his life considering how hard it was for him. He was a pretty good ball player in high school, but in college he was really good and he is now exceeding in the pros, making all-star teams and whatnot. I thought that was the story we would want to tell for those people who think they can’t, but really can if they are determined and work hard for it.”

Those who wish to contact Casey regarding his football career and/or just to catch up, you can reach him via Twitter and Instagram: @Irishman_22 and @Irishman22. He can also be reached by his email: [email protected]

This writer can be reached via Twitter: @namoodnhoj.

For more features, read the Jan. 29 article, Student Leadership: Begins hosting special days.

By |2015-02-02T00:00:00+00:00February 2nd, 2015|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Students participates in Christmas Crowd Hero (VIDEO)

Every year, as somewhat of a semester finale, the leadership class creates post cards with increments of the tale of Jesus' birth.FC File Server

Every year, as somewhat of a semester finale, the leadership class creates post cards with increments of the tale of Jesus’ birth.

Seniors partake in annual tradition

FC held its annual Christmas chapel in which the senior class serenades the rest of the student body, with their reading of the Christmas story, Dec. 9.

Every year, as somewhat of a semester finale, the leadership class creates post cards with increments of the tale of Jesus’ birth. Leadership teacher, Robert Foshee, explained why he thinks it is important to have the seniors read during chapel.

“Well number one, the seniors reading is tradition,” Foshee said. “But number two, I think it is important to have the senior put forth a little Christmas spirit for the younger classes. It kind of gives the seniors something to pass on to the other kids to kick off Christmas break.”

To conclude the chapel, the crowd was divided into three sections and were given one of three tasks. One section was given bells, one was given drum sticks and one was left with their bare hands to make music.

Following the distribution of the instruments, a game, quite similar to Guitar Hero, was displayed on the big screens. The students were then required to play their interment, or clap their hands, in accordance with the on-screen requirements.

Foshee got the idea for this fun and interactive game after witnessing it during a Sunday service at Peoples Church. After collaboration with worship team leader, Daniel Garrison, leadership was able to lead the crowd in their musical fiasco which included many popular Christmas carols.

With such a unique elements being added to the chapel service, many students enjoyed the interactiveness. Senior, Joseph Lange shared his thoughts on the service.

“I liked this chapel a lot because it allowed all the students to work together to get something done,” Lange said. “For some people, it can get kinda boring just sitting in chapel and listening to worship. This time they did a good job of mixing things up.”

For more Christmas articles, check out Home economics whips up treats for a good cause (VIDEO), and BRIEF: Wawona Ranch Estates host Christmas lane.

This writer can be reached via Twitter: @namoodnhoj.

For more features, read the Dec. 10 article, Students participates in Christmas Crowd Hero (VIDEO).

By |2014-12-11T00:00:00+00:00December 11th, 2014|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Japanese restaurant adds entertaining aspect to preparation

Student Reviews Local Japanese Restaurant

With such a large selection of dining options in the Fresno and Clovis area, it can be hard to find a restaurant with originality and authenticity.

IMG_6133Ashley Garcia | The Feather Online Archive

With such a large selection of dining options in the Fresno and Clovis area, it can be hard to find a restaurant with originality and authenticity.

I made it a goal to locate a new restaurant that offered not only good food, but also a hint of creativity. This search led me to find Sakanaya, a Japanese restaurant offering teppanyaki.

Walking through the front door, it feels like you have just entered a Japanese garden. Exotic plants hanging off the ceiling and winding their way down the torii, this restaurant has a beautiful atmosphere.

In a teppanyaki restaurant like this, you are seated at a small bar, wrapping around a grill, along with other random customers. Because of this dining system, you may have to wait a while to be seated, due to the fact that they must fill the bar. I had to wait about 20 minutes.

I received my drink immediately after I was seated and the waitress took my order within 5 minutes.

If you are interested in attending Sakanaya for dinner, you will be looking at dining on the more expensive side. The cheapest meal starts $18 while prices can reach up to $40 plus.

I decided on the teriyaki chicken because you can never go wrong with cliche asian dishes. All meals come with a small salad and bowl of mushroom soup beforehand.

The chef wheeled a food cart containing the all the required ingredients to prepare everyone’s dishes. This is when the entertaining aspect of the Sakanaya experience came into play.

The chef threw all the ingredients on the grill and proceeded to astound the crowd as he twirled his utensils high in the air. The most fascinating trick performed must have been the onion volcano, consisting of a pile of onion rings funneling a plume of fire out the top.

Because the chef must prepare food for many different people, not everyone is served their food right away. A large portion of fried rice was prepared first for everyone. Next, a generous helping of stir fry was divvied up between the customers. Finally everyone was served their meat following the proper cooking time.

I was expecting to come away from this meal feeling hungry, but to my surprise, the portions were much larger than I was anticipating. I could not finish the whole meal.

This restaurant would be the perfect place to dine on a date night or a special occasion with a large group. I would not recommend eating here alone due to the extreme awkwardness of being paired with strangers.

While the food was delectable and the atmosphere was very inviting, the biggest issue I had was the prices. While you may sacrifice the high profile dining experience, you can eat at a variety of other teppanyaki restaurants around Fresno for virtually the same quality of food at much lower prices.

I will give this restaurant a four out of five stars because of the great tasting food and fulfilling meals. Next time you are looking for a place to take a date or have a family night, try checking out Sakanaya Japanese Restaurant.

Follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather and Instagram @thefeatheronline. This writer can be reached via Twitter: @Nohjnamood.

For more reviews, read the Nov. 25 article, New album sparks interest in community.

By |2014-12-01T00:00:00+00:00December 1st, 2014|Food, Uncategorized|0 Comments

King nominees bust a move (VIDEO)

While the actual night of FC’s 30th homecoming is a much anticipated celebration, there is one event during homecoming week that is exclusive to the FC students.

The event is the annual King Dance and your senior king nominees are Jordan Castro, Collin Winegarden, Nick Fontes, Chris Grossman and Aaron DeWolf. For 30 minutes, the entire student body sat in shock as they witnessed the kings get down in ways that have they have never been down in before.

With each nominee having the ability to choose which song they wanted to dance to, the kings used this opportunity to express themselves through funky body movement. Featured songs included “Shake it Off,” “Billie Jean,” “Ain’t no Mountain High Enough,” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “The Real Slim Shady“.

This dance was no easy feat for the king court. Hours of practicing choreography was required to ensure that the maximum level of entertainment was received from their performance.

Having to stay after school countless days, Winegarden shared just how much work was put into the dance.

“We were told we were going to have a month to prepare, but it ended up only being like two weeks,” Winegarden said. “We were here for about two hours everyday after school practicing. It was a lot of hard work and trying to focus, but it was totally worth it.”

The king dance gives the nominees one last chance to truly connect with their class before they graduate. The kings learn a lot about each other and form close bonds with one another.

Having such an exciting experience, Fontes described his favorite aspect of the dance and shared what he has taken away from it.

“My favorite part of the whole thing was just being able to hang out with such a great group of guys,” Fontes said. “All the kings are just really close, you could tell by the way we dance with each other. The camaraderie and being able to entertain the whole class was awesome. I really see it as a once in a life time experience and i am going to hold onto it.”

Majority of the king and queen nominees have grown up together since elementary school. Queen nominee, Gaby Siqueiros, ’15, stated what it is that she enjoyed about watching the kings dance.

“I really enjoyed watching the kings, people I have known since the seventh grade, dance on stage,” Siqueiros said. “It was fun to watch them do things that they would not normally do in public. It really took them out of their comfort zone, but they nailed it.”

After their first on stage performance, the kings brought their queens on stage to serenade them with homemade pickup lines. Fontes used his first name and his witty mind to create a pickup line that brought laughter to the whole crowd.

“If I had a nickel for everything I don’t like about you,” Fontes said. “I would be Nickeless {Nicholas}.”

To conclude the show, the kings then returned to the stage for an encore. Sophomore Daniel Ayers, stated what his favorite part of the whole event was.

“My favorite part of the event was when the kings said their famous pickup lines,” Ayers said. “I could not stop laughing the whole time. My favorite line was Dewolf’s ‘six reasons’ line.”

The 30th annual homecoming will be on the north field at 7 p.m., Oct. 31. Homecoming candidates will be introduced during the pre-game at 6:30 p.m., and the homecoming court announced during half-time.

This writer can be reached via Twitter: @Nhojnamood.

For more on homecoming, read the Oct. 29 article, Queens got talent, sashay down the runway (VIDEO). For more features, read the Oct. 30 article, Unexpected journey leads Solis to campus.

By |2014-10-30T00:00:00+00:00October 30th, 2014|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments