Athlete of the Issue: Jian Lee finds home on gridiron

October 28, 2009 — by Karen Lyu

The football field is lit up by blinding white lights. Sweat beads form on senior running back Jian Lee’s forehead as he focuses on the football hurtling his way. He catches it in his arms and hugs it tightly to his chest, scoring one of his two touchdowns in SHS’s first game again Westmont on Sept. 12. In that game alone, Lee rushed an impressive 41 yards, helping the Falcons dominate 52-27.

Lee first started playing Falcon football his freshman year. Now he can’t even imagine life without it. He is one of three tailbacks who plays regularly on varsity, currently averaging 46 yards per game.

The adrenaline and sportsmanship involved keeps his head and heart in the game.

“It’s fun to [play] against other schools,” said Lee. “[I like] the competitive edge in it.”

Besides providing the fun of going up against other schools, playing football also gives Lee a chance to hang out with his friends and get closer to his teammates. According to Lee, the football team is very close knit because of all the time they spend together.

“You become better friends with the guys on the team,” said Lee.

Although practice takes up a grueling 15 hours each week, Lee juggles his academics, social life and love for the game well. He learned it the hard way in his sophomore year, when the game took a toll on his school work. Lee said he handles everything well now, though some nights when practice runs late, he often can be found staying up late to finish his work.

“You have to go to practice and you have to do your homework,” said Lee. “You have to be focused and know that you don’t have the time to mess around.”

Although he does not plan on playing football in college, Lee continues to be more than devoted to the game. Lee admits that football is one of the most important aspects to him.

“It’s like my life,” said Lee. “[During the summer], it took up a lot of time. I couldn’t go on vacation; I couldn’t do anything.”

“But,” he says confidently, “it was worth it.”

2 views this week