When Hendrix began football practice, two former teammates and one longtime rival were united.
Quarterback Seth Peters of Greenbrier helped recruit one newcomer (defensive back Reid Cone of Greenbrier) and kidded around with a longtime competitor (defensive back Jake Steward of Vilonia).
Peters committed to Hendrix after leading Greenbrier to a perfect regular season and a 5A-West title. After graduating from Greenbrier, Cone walked on at Henderson State last season, then transferred to Hendrix during the summer.
“I was redshirted and Hendrix and Seth and I got to talking over the summer,” said Cone, 5-foot-11, 195. “He told me to come over and check things out. When I did, I knew this was where I wanted to be and I could play quicker here.”
“Reid was pretty easy to sell,” said Peters, 5-11, 183, one of two quarterbacks on the roster. “He has the same mindset as I do. We want to play football and we’re here to win football games but getting an education is the most important thing. We both have the future in mind.”
Cone plans to major in political science while Peters is a chemistry major with eventual plans for medical school.
“I didn’t know what to expect here, but once I looked around saw the facilities and met the coaching staff, I was sold.”
Both Peters and Cone compare building a program at Hendrix to what they helped do at Greenbrier as the Panthers went from losing program to one of the top teams in the state.
“It’s similar challenge to what Reid and I faced at Greenbrier,” Peters said. “It was a great experience building and program and seeing a community come together.”
Steward, a 6-0, 180, defensive back was used the chasing and going against Peters.
“It’s a new experience for us,” Steward said.
“It’s been fun to kid each other and share stories. It’s just different being on the same team together.”
“It’s a cool feeling,” Peters said. “We spent three years butting heads. We were always great competitors and respected each other.”
Steward said the Hendrix coaches had recruited him hard.
“They were on me, calling me since the end of the season,” he said. “I feel in love with them and what they were doing.”
The trio is proud of the legacy they are helping to build as members of the first Hendrix football team in 53 years.
“We have the chance to set our own records and make our own history,” said Peters. “It’s a great experience to be one of the firsts at something.”
“It’s cool to think about coming back here in 10 or 15 years and to know we played a big part in building what they have,” said Cone.
First, there has been bonding time.
“The most fun part has been learning about each other and how we’ve come from different places and to hear everyone’s stories,” Cone said.
“I’ve loved lunch time,” said Steward after the initial practice. “We’re all together and sharing things and telling jokes. I haven’t stopped laughing.”