Nebraska punter Sam Foltz died tragically late last month at age 22. Of course, all deaths are tragic when you're 22, but Foltz's -- and former Michigan State punter Mike Sadler, who was also killed in the single-car crash in rural Wisconsin -- was especially tragic, as Foltz died while returning from doing what he loved: playing football and pouring into people's lives.
Though his position is often the but of jokes -- "Punters are people, too" -- Foltz became a leader and fan favorite at Nebraska. The video the Huskers produced for their annual Fan Day celebration explained why.
"I really interact with guys all the time," Foltz said. "I'm always checking in on guys, seeing how they're doing, joking around with them, picking them up when they need to be picked up. I think that's where I gain a lot of respect from all the guys, and I truly value that, too. I have a lot of friendships. A lot of these guys are basically my brothers, my best friends too."
Foltz clearly loved being a Husker, and the Huskers returned the love right back.
Foltz's legacy shows that leadership doesn't have to come from the quarterback, or the middle linebacker, or the head coach. It can come from whoever's willing to step up and lead.