Stratford Head Coach Mark Farriba depends a lot on number 56. In the classroom David Matlock has a four point one grade point average.
All those smarts come into play every Friday night.
“Well it helps us a lot because your center is really our quarterback so to speak of the offensive line so he makes a lot of calls and directs traffic up there so there's more of a burden on him so you need a guy with a pretty good clue about what's going on,” Farriba said.
Not only can he call the shots on the field Matlock likes to bring out the best in people as he guides them along.
“When we're coming together as a team out on the field I feel like what's when I enjoy football the most, Matlock said with a smile. I've learned from leadership is that if they know you're willing to get down and do the dirty work with them people actually follow you.”
Some of that down and dirty work includes spending hours on homework after practice.
Matlock has four advanced placement courses on his schedule.
“AP statistics, AP journalism, AP English,” he rattled off.
And even with all of that going on the senior has found a friend, another senior or sorts called Mr. Charley.
The two met up every week this past summer to play checkers.
“He beat me in checkers every time I played him and I got tidbits of wisdom so it was just a nice experience,” Matlock said.
A player that wants to see his teammates do well, a young man that makes time for an afternoon board game and a dedicated student in the classroom.
Matlock sees himself continuing those roles down the road.
“Recently I’ve been messing around in the business field, Matlock projected. I really enjoy the strive to get better and I feel like that's where my strengths lie.”