At one point or another, it is rather natural for butterflies the size of buzzards to well up in an athlete’s gut.
Carolina Forest defensive lineman Peter Brady understands that feeling all too well, saving his nauseous nervousness for the Panthers’ most important games.
Indeed, certain games are bigger than others. And then, you have THE GAME.
All seemed rather ordinary for the junior student-athlete Friday morning, waking up for what he expected to be another run of the mill day at school.
Boy, was he wrong.
Earlier that morning, Brady learned he, his mother and father would be in attendance for Super Bowl LI on Sunday night in Houston.
“(Friday morning) I was surprised by my mom at 7,” he said.
According to Brady, he and his family arrived in Houston at 10 p.m. local time. On Saturday, were to visit the NFL Experience and tour this year’s Super Bowl host city.
For the Carolina Forest student-athlete, the past 48 hours have proven to be quite the whirlwind journey, going from making plans to watch his beloved New England Patriots on his couch at home to seeing them live and in person. Such excitement and expectation made for some anxious moments during school Friday, his mind straying from what was occurring inside the classroom to the memories he’d make over the weekend.
As news trickled through the halls of Carolina Forest, Brady said he was met with support, well wishes and inquiries regarding extra tickets.
“A lot of people tried to get an extra ticket from me,” he joked, “but for the most part they were pretty surprised and supportive.”
Sharing the same last name as a certain four-time Super Bowl winning quarterback playing in Sunday’s game, Brady expects to be asked regularly if the two of them are any relation to each other.
“Haha, I actually get that a lot more than people would think,” he said. “A lot of people say they don’t know anyone else with the last name Brady, and just assume it’s not common, I guess.”
As for penchant for butterflies, the Carolina Forest student-athlete expect them to come on hot and heavy the closer the game draws toward kickoff — this despite him not being one of those taking the field.
“When we played games like Hoggard, Conway and Myrtle Beach, they were clearly a different kind of atmosphere than I was used to,” Brady said. “Those kind of games have a certain feeling I’m expecting to feel on Sunday.”