Teammate | 2020 ATH Cullen Coleman "Always" Sets Great Example

May 1, 2019

Cullen Coleman‍ still manages to surprise Ahmed Suliman, but the 2020 New York athlete’s teammate isn’t stunned that Coleman can do the things he does on the field.

If that makes sense.

Suliman, a defensive end for Rye Country Day, found himself marveling at Coleman at times on the field last season.

“He’d have these touchdown runs where he would literally be dragging defenders with his legs,” he recalls. “He just wouldn’t stop. He’d basically chug through the final 10 yards to the end zone and have the whole defense at his legs. I think it’s just crazy to see how he’s grown in terms of toughness.”

But at the same time, Suliman knows where that growth has come from, “I’ve played with him for multiple years and I saw the toughness and grit really develop.”

“He’s just a great example, always,” he continues. “He’s a guy a lot of people look up to. He leads by example. You can’t miss him because he is so big. On the field, he never leaves anything out there. He always tries to work hard and push himself and others. I think that energy he gives off and the vibe he gives off is infectious because people see him working and grinding, dominating on the field and it makes everyone want to do what he’s doing. It just raises the level of play for everybody.”

Sometimes players can try too hard to grab that mantle of leadership and rub the teammates he’s trying to lead the wrong way.

Not the case with Coleman, according to Suliman.

“He’s definitely not that type of guy,” says Suliman. “Everyone loves him on and off the field.”

It’s easy to see why his teammates love Coleman, who plays running back and linebacker, on the field. He has offers from programs like Notre Dame, Alabama, Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State for a reason.

“We always knew he was a phenomenal athlete,” Suliman says. “I’ve been doing track & field with him since freshman year and he was always one of the fastest people on the track. That just translates to the field, when he’s taking 60, 70 yards to the house like he did in the first play of the game in our championship game. You can see how dominant of an athlete he is.

Suliman calls him “just dominant.”

 “I don’t think you’re going to find anyone in this area who is that tall, that big, 225, 230, 6-3, who moves that fast,” he adds. “I just don’t think there are many people who can do what he does with that combination of size and speed. That’s what makes him so dangerous.”

And Suliman is certainly happy to have Coleman in his huddle.

“It’s definitely a relief,” he laughs.

“I would not want to be on the opposite of the ball.”


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