Endicott, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Lucas DePofi had some big shoes to fill when he stepped onto the field at Union-Endicott. His two older brothers suited up for the Tigers, with one still playing linebacker at Alfred State. But Lucas wanted to be better.
"They have always kind of had the athletic part down, but not always the school work," said DePofi. "So that kind of aspect showed me early on that you can't always be good on the field, you've got to get it done in the classroom too."
He says he's had to work for every bit of his nearly 93 average, working to have the highest GPA on this year's U-E team. However, on the field football has come easier than the classroom. He was the Defensive Player of the Game in last year's state semifinals.
Meanwhile on the wrestling mat, he's the defending Section 4 champion at 220 pounds. But those successes have led to greater things in is classes.
"School has not always been easy, but football has helped me to prove that sometimes you've just got to go out and try your hardest and if it doesn't work," said DePofi. "Try something else and keep working."
It's a work ethic that rubs off onto his teammates.
"He can have a contagious personality," said coach Tom Baleno. "He works hard, and others around him will work hard as well. He's more of a leader by example."
Like many younger siblings though, DePofi fights to be better than he older brothers.
"I'm very driven, I think I have something to prove after my brothers and my family," he said. "I definitely want to make it a better name and try to work my hardest just to make my family proud."
Making his own footprints, which may be even bigger at U-E.