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Walk-On Island: The Challenge that Shaped My Life

Walk-On Island: The Challenge that Shaped My Life - Terrell Douglas

Walk-On Island: The Challenge that Shaped My Life


"Walk-On Island" is a true American success story straight from small-town Texas to big time college football. Like the best stories, it starts with a small child, some foggy dreams, and a whole lot of adversity.

Terrell Douglas didn't have much chance of succeeding when he was growing up. His family moved when the rent was due, his father struggled with drug addiction demons, and his mother worked from dawn till dusk. Against all odds, she pieced together the staples of life, starting with the most modest of goals; a roof over her family head and enough food for her three children.

There was family and the church's grounding, right across the street from his great grandma's house. There was a sliver of light that shone on a young man fighting the same dangerous elements thousands of other youngsters in town succumbed to. He stood firm. When you face adversity, life, and death at a young age, it makes you a victim or tougher.

Members of the Douglas family were never victims; they were realists who met their challenges head-on. Terrell never did put up with things that went wrong; he didn't endure them. He beat them, no matter what it took.

Along with the church, school provided Terrell a chance to excel and dream. He even thought that he might just become the first person in his family to graduate from college, but then again, where would the money for that come from?

Stability came to him in high school. Grades, a steady girl, and coaches who listened, inspired, and passed on the fire needed to excel in football if someone had the strength to block-out what Texas' streets offered. A scholarship would solve so many problems, but getting one was tough, and the odds were low.

The only challenge would be somehow getting to college on a part-time drummer's pay and an even longer shot of making a football team as a walk-on-player - so few chances, and so unlikely. It might take a miracle.

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"Walk-On Island" is a true American success story straight from small-town Texas to big time college football. Like the best stories, it starts with a small child, some foggy dreams, and a whole lot of adversity.

Terrell Douglas didn't have much chance of succeeding when he was growing up. His family moved when the rent was due, his father struggled with drug addiction demons, and his mother worked from dawn till dusk. Against all odds, she pieced together the staples of life, starting with the most modest of goals; a roof over her family head and enough food for her three children.

There was family and the church's grounding, right across the street from his great grandma's house. There was a sliver of light that shone on a young man fighting the same dangerous elements thousands of other youngsters in town succumbed to. He stood firm. When you face adversity, life, and death at a young age, it makes you a victim or tougher.

Members of the Douglas family were never victims; they were realists who met their challenges head-on. Terrell never did put up with things that went wrong; he didn't endure them. He beat them, no matter what it took.

Along with the church, school provided Terrell a chance to excel and dream. He even thought that he might just become the first person in his family to graduate from college, but then again, where would the money for that come from?

Stability came to him in high school. Grades, a steady girl, and coaches who listened, inspired, and passed on the fire needed to excel in football if someone had the strength to block-out what Texas' streets offered. A scholarship would solve so many problems, but getting one was tough, and the odds were low.

The only challenge would be somehow getting to college on a part-time drummer's pay and an even longer shot of making a football team as a walk-on-player - so few chances, and so unlikely. It might take a miracle.

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