Sam Kolar’s rooting interests will be for a different shade of red during Oklahoma’s game on Saturday.
The Norman North senior kicker was raised in an OU town but he’ll be cheering on his brothers, Charlie and John, who both play for the Sooners' Week 11 opponent, Iowa State.
“It’s not a tough choice,” Sam Kolar said. “I've grown up in Norman but staying loyal to my family.”
It’ll be a busy football weekend for the Kolar family with Sam playing his final game for the T-Wolves at Harve Collins Field on Friday, followed the next day by Charlie and John’s return to Owen Field, where they helped North win a few Crosstown Clashes.
North's Friday game against Southmoore will cap a season where Sam’s emerged as North’s starting kickoff specialist. He didn’t start playing football, however, until this year.
A few of his friends told him the T-Wolves were short on kicker depth. So, Kolar, who also plays varsity soccer, decided to give his parents a reason to attend North football games again.
“They were pretty surprised,” Sam said. “It was two weeks before our first game. So a little bit of a last-minute decision, but they were supportive and they've had fun coming to games again.”
It’s a happy coincidence both North’s senior night and OU’s annual Big 12 date with Iowa State fell on the same weekend. It’s even more special considering Charlie and John’s hectic lives as Division I student-athletes make it difficult for them to return to Norman.
Sam says he has no desire to continue his athletic career into college after seeing how demanding it is on his older brothers.
“They wake up 5:30-6 in the morning, have about three hours of classes, seven hours of football, something like that,” Sam said, “with meetings and practices and lifting and then go to bed and repeat the next day.”
Charlie and John, who both were standouts for North, are apart of a revitalized Iowa State program that hasn’t had a losing season since Charlie arrived in 2017. The Cyclones are poised at 5-3 to continue the trend this season.
John, the former North quarterback, originally signed and spent four years at Oklahoma State before leaving Stillwater for Ames, Iowa, this past offseason.
John Kolar's Cowboy career intersected with recent OSU starting quarterbacks Mason Rudolph and Taylor Cornelious. So, he chose to spend his final year of eligibility with his brother at Iowa State, where he's naturally added a veteran presence to the locker room as a reserve.
Charlie, a redshirt sophomore, has become a reliable receiving threat for Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy, recording a career-best 486 yards receiving on 34 receptions and five touchdowns so far in 2019.
It’s a unique sight for Sam to see his family name on the back of two Power-5 football players' jerseys on a weekly basis.
“It's pretty surreal,” Sam said. “It's not something you expect to see from your older brothers growing up. I came to their games when I was younger, but I didn't really realize that they were pretty special players until I got older.”
"I'm really proud of them," he added. "They work so hard, and they deserve every bit of it. I keep in touch with them on the phone, but it's nice to see them at games and stuff. It's been a cool experience to see how far they go."
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