Walk-on tryouts produce new addition to CWU football team

Nathan Blauman (pictured) has gone
from a managerial role with CWU football to making the team via tryouts.

Dylan Hanson

Nathan Blauman (pictured) has gone from a managerial role with CWU football to making the team via tryouts.

Evan Couch, Staff Reporter

CWU’s football program hosted walk-on try-outs on Feb.18. For any CWU students in good academic standing who were interested, try-outs were a chance to showcase their work and dedication in hopes of making the football team.

First year student Nathan Blauman has been a part of the team in a managerial role since Aug. 8, 2021. Before coming to CWU, Blauman left Washington State University’s walk-on program in Nov. 2020 due to COVID-19 shutting down the season for walk-ons. 

In November of 2021, Blauman spoke with The Observer about looking forward to try-outs with hopes of making the team. At the time, Blauman said these try-outs felt like his last chance to make a team and get to play football at the collegiate level. 

“This is kind of my last chance,” Blauman said. “I want to make it count.”

Blauman made it count as he was informed on Monday, Feb. 21 that he made the cut.

“It meant a lot to me,” Blauman said. “I haven’t played in a long time now, and I have been wanting to play on a team for awhile and I worked really hard to get to this spot.” 

Blauman said working with the team has been a long journey and getting the confirmation that he made the team meant a lot to him.  

“I was confident with [my performance at try-outs], but I didn’t hear about it for a little bit so I was a little worried that potentially I didn’t make it,” Blauman said.

Blauman had to wait three days after the try-out before being informed that he made it.

Blauman said he had been training in various ways to prepare, such as maintaining strength by lifting weights as well as staying in shape and cutting weight by running and conditioning. 

Blauman said on the mental side of preparation, it was all about preparing for the uncertainty of a try-out.

“Mentally, [I was] just preparing, whether I made it or not, for that moment,” Blauman said. “So I wouldn’t react too much to it one way or the other, so I wouldn’t be too down about it or excited, just even keel throughout the process.”

For other students looking to attempt to walk-on and go through this process, Blauman said one of the biggest strengths is to be coachable. Blauman said from his perspective, coaches always appreciate when an athlete is coachable. 

“I definitely think that helps,” Blauman said. “If you don’t listen and aren’t being coachable, they’re going to move on and not be interested at all. That’s definitely one of the main things if you want to play any sport.”  

Looking ahead, Blauman said he is excited for what is to come now that he has made the team. Blauman said there are some goals he is looking forward to now that he has accomplished this step in the process. 

“[I look forward to] making a name for myself on the field,” Blauman said. “Earning a spot to where I can potentially see some playing time, just prove that I can play.” 

Blauman will look for the chance to prove himself when spring ball starts as the team begins preparing for their spring game on Apr. 23.