#42 on the gridiron again

Number 42 for the Wildcats this year is Brody Moore who “embodies” the traits of the player who wore it last, Tate Myre. Photos by Wheaton Photography

Moore demonstrates Tate’s traits

By Don Rush

Some Wildcat football fans may have wondered why they are seeing #42 again gracing the playing field. Jersey number 42 was worn by Tate Myre who lost his life as a junior in the high school shooting of November 2021. This year it is being worn by defensive back and wide receiver Senior Brody Moore.

Last year being Tate’s senior year, we knew that was Tate’s jersey,” said Coach Zach Line. “Last year Buck (Tate’s father) or one of the players brought it down to the sidelines with his cleats. After the season the one thing we didn’t want to do is retire it. In football there are no rafters to hang jerseys. We wanted it to be on the field. With who Tate was, all his character traits he presented, the biggest being accountability – that jersey can be a symbol of good and positivity.”

Brody Moore, a leader of the field. Photo by Wheaton Photography

Line said about a year ago he approached Buck Myre, who with his family and friends started 42 Strong – The Tate Myre Foundation to honor their son’s memory, and talked about the possibility of using the jersey to recognize football players who are outstanding people.

I approached them, told them my thoughts and let them think about it. It had to be Buck’s and his family’s decision,” Line said. “They were all for it.”

The foundation, of which Line is on the board of directors, is a peer-to-peer mentorship program for youth in their communities. The foundation, launched in May 2022, is dedicated to creating a better future by helping students develop a greater sense of purpose, community and resilience. On their foundation’s website is a list of  “Tate Traits” including, being selfless, hard working, respectful, accountable, trustworthy, caring, fun, positive, teachable, humble, confident and loyal.

In talking with Buck, of all those traits, it came down to ‘accountability,’” Line said. “You can go through all the Tate Traits and list them off, but all of them start with accountability.”

Line said he and his staff in the off season and they discussed what this opportunity meant.

We were looking for someone on the team who is going to be a next level leader, accountable, selfless – and none of it has to do with talent,” Line said. “We took talent out of the equation. We measure strictly on if they are leaders and good teammates and being a good person.”

He said coming down to the end was hard, because “we can only have one Number 42 on the field” and according to Michigan High School Athletic Association rules, Number 42 is a skilled position, as opposed to a lineman.

It was pretty easy to choose Brody. Brody embodies all those traits. He’s been on varsity for three years,” Line said. “A lot of being on varsity is about maturity and leadership as much as it is talent. You can have the most talented kid in the world, but if he can’t handle being a good friend or a good teammate he’s not going to be up here. Brody displays those traits and he’s gotten better and better as a leader.”

Line said  assistant coach Jason Eldridge asked his son about one day being able to wear Number 42. “His son told him, ‘why you would have to be a great leader’ and then he started naming traits that normally kids these days don’t talk about. It would take a lot of effort, work ethic. Jason asked his son if he would like to work towards it one day. And, his son said absolutely. This is the only award I know of where you are being recognized only for being an outstanding person. If we can have all the junior players and middle school players on up all striving to wear Number 42, then we’re on to something good.”


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