Landers Athlete of the Week: Kelcey Miller Jr. - Nov. 3
MINDEN, LA (KSLA) - Kelcey Miller Jr. is a senior tight end for the Minden Tide who has made several spectacular plays this season.
He says the secret is patience.
"His sophomore year, we were kind of looking for a tight end. And we tried him out right there in the spring, and we saw that he could catch really well," Minden head coach Spencer Heard said.
"Over the years, he's gotten a lot bigger, especially up top. I think it gives him an advantage, especially when he goes up top. He can use his size and muscle as advantage to out-muscle people."
Kelcey plays several positions for the Tide.
"One of our sets, he's in the backfield; another set, he's at tight end, and another set, he's split out at wide receiver," Heard said. "He's all over the place. He plays some defense and special teams. It's been a luxury to have those types of kids that are so versatile."
Kelcey's adapted to the role quite well considering he didn't start playing football until his freshman year.
"When people start as freshmen, you feel like, yeah, I'm about to take over the team," Kelcey said. "My freshman year, I didn't even touch the field."
Kelcey learned the game fast and now he has taken notice.
"They call me Mr. Hands and stuff like that. And I tell them no, it's all about the vision; wherever your eyes go, that's where you hands go."
The reason being an athlete comes so natural to Kelcey, also known as K.J., is because they say it's in his blood.
"Kelcey's Dad (who was a baseball player) thinks he gets it from him; and I say it's from me, his Mom," said Kelcey's mother, Navasha Scott.
Kelcey's uncle Johnny Morris said he's due some credit. "I guess I'm the one that made him play football because I played football and I didn't like baseball. So I told him you are going to play football like I did."
Kelcey's stepdad says he played a role, as well.
"I stuck him in it early when he was a little boy. But they made me pull him out because they said he had nurse-made bones," Darrius Carter said. "Now I guess they feel like the bones ain't too nurse-made. You got to be built tough for the game of football."
As you can see, Kelcey has a family full of supporters who rarely miss a game.
Navada Robinson, Kelcey's maternal grandmother, said: "I feel like God answered my prayers, I'm glad I'm able to see my children and grandchildren take a stand and not be afraid of anything."
Minden is on the verge of doing something special this season. And K.J. says he's not the only reason the team is 9-0.
"One player don't make a team; that's why it's called team," Kelcey said. "It's more than just me out there; we are really a team.
"We don't point out any one person. All of the talent is starting to stand out and stick together. Shoutout to our offensive line."
Offensive lineman Darien Mitchell appreciates that. "It means a lot because we don't get a lot of recognition. And to hear it from our own teammate, it means a lot and it's special."
It's the 100th year of football for the Minden program.
But it's the tough loss to Franklinton that still burns in the minds of all of these players.
"The one field goal hurt. And a month after the loss, we got back to work."
Kelcey said patience has been the key to his team's success.
"Last year, I thought I was always open and I was like, dang, he missed me. But now I'm like it's going to come back around to me.
"So that's all I'm thinking, my time is coming. Everybody has a time, and the time is coming; you have to just be patient. That's why I always say be patient 11."
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