Athlete Spotlight: Raul Serrano
October 28th, 2004
Raul Serrano is the type of player that has the uncanny ability to affect his team positively, whether on the football field or off of it. Luckily for the team, once the whistle blows and the game starts, he is almost always on the field.
Serrano has been a star for the varsity football team since he was a sophomore. Now in his third year on the team he has become the team’s inspirational leader on and off the field. According to senior co-captain Simon Lee, “Raul leads through determination and commitment.” This determination and commitment has allowed Serrano to start on both sides of the ball. On one side of the ball Serrano plays offensive guard and on the other he plays middle and outside linebacker. He is able to play on both sides of the ball at an amazingly high level thanks to his impressive work ethic.
Starting wide receiver senior Sam Brookfield agreed, “Raul is one of the hardest workers on the team, he is in the weight room everyday during the off-season and he has dropped a lot of weight to become faster and more agile." This terrific work ethic is greatly appreciated amongst his teammates and may be even more important in the future as Serrano plans to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Serrano is clearly one of the motivational leaders of this year’s varsity football team. He brings an unparalleled level of excitement and energy to the team every single day. Many people are able to get pumped up during games, but few are so pumped up for practice. Serrano’s love for the game fuels his passion in practice, which he believes to be vitally important to the outcome of each and every game. Serrano’s determination and dedication in practice is shown by the fact that he has lost huge amounts of weight in order to become a much better football player.
Serrano said, “I am naturally overflowing with energy and I try to use my energy to pump other people up and get them motivated; that's the most important contribution I can make to our team.” This attitude put together with his upbeat personality, closeness with his teammates, and love for the game makes Serrano a key piece to the puzzle that is Stuyvesant football.
Every team needs its leaders. What makes Serrano so good at it is that leadership comes naturally to him. But he does not lead his teammates and motivate them by yelling. Assistant Coach Matt Hahn believes that he “is the most happy-go-lucky guy in the world,” and that he “has that personality where everyone just loves him.”
Few can remember a time when Serrano was not happy and smiling. Offensive lineman Andrew Kim explains that Serrano is “fun, kind, and always smiling, even when he's coming at you full speed.”
His leadership has earned him the respect and trust of the team. Lee explains that Serrano “is one of the most reliable people I have ever played alongside, in any sport. Playing next to Raul gives you both a sense of security and power that enables you to play harder than you knew you were capable of.”
As do most team leaders, Serrano has his fair share of awards for stellar play on the field. He won the award for most outstanding rookie in his freshman year on the Junior Varsity football team. As a sophomore on the Varsity football team he won the most outstanding rookie award and followed it up his junior year with the unsung hero award. But Serrano’s total impact is so much more than that of a talented and great athlete. He leads by example and his impact on the team cannot be measured by any one factor. Stuyvesant football would not be the same without him, and the Peglegs clearly have no problem with relying on number 51, Raul Serrano.