Sign In | Create an Account | Welcome, . My Account | Logout | Submit News | UPickEm Contest | Football Frenzy | Home RSS

Family affair for Clark

October 3, 2013
By MATTHEW PEASLEE - Tribune Chronicle ( , Underthelights

BROOKFIELD - Joe Clark can't always just go home from football practice and relax for the evening. He's not like the other players on the Brookfield Warriors football team.

"I have to hear it at football and at home," Clark said.

His father, Randy, is the head coach.

"It's a pain in the butt sometimes," Joe said. "But it's good for me. He's taught me a lot over the years and it's pretty special."

So special that he has the word "family" tattooed on his upper right arm. It was OK'd by Randy because Joe was underage when he got it done.

Joe is listed at just 5-foot-9, 185 pounds but he plays larger than his small stature. He's a leader who was needed in last week's 28-14 win over John F. Kennedy at Mollenkopf Stadium.

The Eagles took a 14-0 lead and still led by a touchdown at halftime.

"A lot of people stepped up in the locker room and put a little fire under each others butts," Joe said. "It's what we needed."

Brookfield scored 21 unanswered points and shut out Kennedy in the second half. Clark scored two touchdowns and rushed for 170 yards, earning him the Tribune Chronicle's Player of the Week honor.

"The team really just came together at halftime," he said. "We had our sights set on the win and nothing was going to stop us. I'm proud of the way we played."

The younger Clark was one of the few names on the 2013 Warriors roster that was familiar to most high school football fans. They graduated 12 record-breaking and standard-setting players including current Youngstown State player Ryan Mosora and prolific passer Jeremy Quinlan.

"Last year, it was different," Clark said. "We had a lot of leaders and I was in the background. I was watching and learned a lot from those guys."

Now, he's the guy.

"I've stepped up a lot," Clark said. "I've become a motivator. I can't get too up or too down because I know the underclassmen are counting on me to be a leader."

Hubbard is awaiting the 4-1 Warriors. Though the teams haven't faced each other since 2008, Clark knows just what to expect with the unbeaten Eagles.

"Playing a 5-0 team is always a big step up," he said. "But playing Hubbard, you know it's going to be a bigger step up times 10."

Clark has already surpassed his rushing total from a year ago, but his game plan for Hubbard comes on the other side of the ball.

"We need to stop them on defense," said Clark, also a defensive back. "They're going to try to run all over us but we're going to hit them on defense."