High school athletes invest a lot of time and effort so that they can be ready when they step on the field or court. Whether the preperation is physical or mental, it is important to their overall success. Derek Bailey says that he works hard in order to prove others wrong.
“It takes countless hours of hard work even when no one else is willing to put in the same work,” Bailey said. “My biggest motivation is that I want to prove that size doesn’t matter and you don’t always have to be big to succeed.”
Derek is a sophomore at Adair High School, where he plays football, basketball, and baseball. Outside of sports, he is also a member of the Future Farmers of America program.
During his career, Derek has had a number of people that he sees as examples and role models, but he says that there is a former Adair athlete and also a teacher that have both made an impact on his life.
“Chris Canida is a big influence on my life,” Bailey said. “He was my size in high school so he knows how to overcome the challenges that come with being small and he encourages me to work hard and overcome those challenges. Also, Mrs. Kemp because she was the first person to tell me that I have a chance to be valedictorian of my class which has pushed me to want to achieve that goal.”
Adair head football coach, Rob Gilstrap, knows that Bailey will play a role on the Warriors football season this year.
“He is a quick and sure-handed athlete that will make plays for us this season,” Gilstrap said. “He showed promise as freshman on both sides of the ball.”
Being a part of a team, Derek’s teammates have played a part in him becoming the athlete that he is.
“I enjoy playing alongside my teammates,” he said. “Cale Winfrey is probably the one that I like going up against the most in practice. It gives me a challenge and he also pushes me to be the best I can be in practice. Also, Zeb Heaton is an underrated member of the team. He comes to practice every day and works harder than almost anyone on the field and just doesn’t get a lot of playing time.”