Claremore Daily Progress

Sports

September 24, 2013

Littell gives Stillwater football team a lift

STILLWATER — Anybody who knows Jon Littell, knows he’s not one to watch from the stands — something he chose to do on Friday nights in the fall because of a promising baseball career.

But after Stillwater High School’s 47-34 loss to McAlester in the opening week, Littell couldn’t take it any more. Baseball career or not, he knew where he belonged — on the football field at Pioneer Stadium.

“I went to the game and I told some of my friends on the team that I would be there for the McAlester game,” Littell said. “That was pretty much the last straw. I couldn’t take much more than that. I contacted coach (Tucker) Barnard that weekend and we talked about it for a little bit. I prayed about it a lot and he was willing to take me back.”

As simple as it sounds, Barnard’s version of the story wasn’t that easy. Littell’s call came as a little bit of a surprise to the Stillwater coach.

“Jon called and honestly, he didn’t really tell me what he wanted,” Barnard said. “He just asked if I’d go meet with him and talk to him. We went and visited, talked about his situation and talked about his baseball future. He had an injury a couple years ago, so we went and talked about all that, but basically he wanted to help the football team — he wanted to try to help us win.

“I was happy to hear that. I’m happy to hear that kind of mentality. If we had come out and won that McAlester game by 40 points and wanted to be a part of that, that’s a lot easier to see. But when we lose a tough one like that and a guy wants to come out and help, that’s pretty exciting.”

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