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High School Sports

A legend’s take

YC football great Jagan Cleary comments on the Fall sports season.

Jagan Cleary once played a key role in solidifying Yuma Catholic's reputation as a state championship caliber football program.

In his final 2 seasons as the starting quarterback for the Shamrocks, he is the only signal caller in school history to lead them to back to back state titles. (2013 and 2014)

Just in his senior season alone, Cleary amassed 3,629 yards passing and 51 touchdown passes to close out his remarkable YC career.

Cleary would go on to experience more success at Lake College in Illinois, where he would break 5 different school passing records by the time he graduated just last year.

Now, in the midst of the Coronavirus Pandemic, the Arizona Interscholastic Association has set in motion a modified football season timeline to begin on the weekend of October 2nd.

The current group of Yuma Catholic Shamrocks are "all in" to compete.

News 11 Sports caught up with Cleary on Wednesday to get his perspective of the late season start and the growing potential for prep football's return, especially for the Shamrocks.

"Hopefully, you know, at the high school level in the state of Arizona, hopefully they can do everything necessary to keep the season afloat. Because I know it means so much to the fans. I know it means so much to the families, and especially the seniors in the upcoming season that they want to have."

Even though it's been 5 years since he's donned a YC uniform, Cleary still keeps in contact with Head Coach Rhett Stallworth and some of the staff of the Rocks program.

From time to time, he especially tries to give advice to current student athletes on how they can be successful, especially in the midst of the current pandemic.

"It's definitely another obstacle that you have to overcome. But, at the same time, everyone is going through it. So you can't use it as an excuse. So, with that being said, it's going to be a matter of what have you done individually that's going to help basically, help between the lines on Friday nights. So, I think as a player and even as a coach, just being a part of that program you know you have to put the team first. And you have to go about each and every day as what is it going to take to get that state title and work hard until you achieve it."

The Shamrocks open their condensed 7-game season on October 2nd at Phoenix Christian.


Rob Fram

Rob Fram rejoined the KYMA News Team in February 2010.


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