Colorado native sons excel in Denver and in San Diego

Three native sons are doing remarkably well in professional baseball and football so far in 2018. Rockies pitcher Kyle Freeland, Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay and Chargers receiver Austin Ekeler have shown that not only can they run with the big boys but they can dominate.

Rockies’ ace, Kyle Freeland, a graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School in Denver, played his college ball at Evansville and was drafted by the Rockies in the first round of the 2014 draft. Since earning his first win against the Dodgers in his Major League debut in April 2017 he has emerged as a force on the young staff. This season his stats are impressive: 15-7 under 3.00 era and a legitimate Cy Young candidate in only his second year in The Bigs. The tall left-hander has gained the respect of his fellow players with his going-about-his-business work ethic. He is a big reason the team is in first place at this writing.

Phillip Lindsay, rookie running back for Broncos, graduated from South High School where he was school’s all-time leading rusher. Then he went to University of Colorado where he set records for yards from scrimmage and all-purpose yards. Despite a serious injury in senior year of high school CU upheld his football scholarship and that altruism paid monster dividends. CU coach Mike MacIntyre called him the Tasmanian Devil due to his remarkable quickness. Phillip was elected team captain his sophomore year and averaged 5 yard per carry at CU.

At 5’ 9” and 190 pounds he was undrafted by the NFL but made the cut with a running-back rich Bronco team. In his first game against the Seahawks he ran between tackles and caught screens, scoring his first passing touchdown to the delight of hometown fans. He is corked energy and explosive drive and is already among the league leaders in rushing and receptions.

Western State Colorado University standout Austin Ekeler now of the Los Angeles Chargers, was born in and went to high school in Eaton, Colorado. Like Lindsay he was an undrafted free agent. Austin is  5’ 10” and 200 pounds worth of tough cookie. He excelled out there in Whizzer White’s backyard. His consistent stats at Western were quite  impressive, leading running backs in all categories junior and senior years.  Average 190 all-purpose yards. 19 touchdowns junior year and 15 senior year plus back-to-back 1500 yards seasons. Like Lindsay he was deemed too small for the NFL but surprise…surprise.

And these days here he is playing pro ball in San Diego. It’s a sure bet he misses the Gunnison winters, heh?

In other sports news: Coloradoans are the least obtuse in the country for the 18th year running. Blunt and sometimes difficult, the Rocky Mountain residents here set the standard for the rest of the nation. Colorado – Be proud or get out.


Filed Under: Lifestyles at Risk


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