WYNOT, Nebraska (KTIV) – For many football players, having their coaches on the field is imperative to success.
For one team in Wynot, Nebraska, their coach is about 11,000 miles away.
Despite this distance, this coach continues to serve his team while serving our country.
“He’s always loved football so it kinda goes hand and hand. It’s one of his favorite pastimes,” says Julie Heimes, wife of head coach Steve Heimes.
“He’s very passionate about the game,” says Steve Wieseler, Wynot Public Schools football coach.
For Steve Heimes, football is one of his greatest loves that knows no distance from Nebraska to Afghanistan.
“He left the middle of July,” says Julie Heimes.
Besides his obligation to his team, Steve had another obligation to his country and was deployed after eight years.
“It was a hard choice to make but he knew that he had to do it,” says Julie Heimes.
“It’s a lot different this year without him on the field. You definitely can tell that something is missing,” says senior Nate Wieseler.
“We were all kinda disappointed that our head coach wasn’t going to be here this season,” says senior Landon Wieseler.
Even though Coach Heimes has some distance between him and his team, it doesn’t stop him from devoting his time to the Blue Devils through the internet.
Many players will use a video-hosting site known as Hudl, a gateway for players to reflect on previous games.
For Steve, it’s his portal to his players despite being 11,000 miles away.
“In a way, he’s still there helping us,” says Landon Wieseler.
“By the time the coaches and team wake up the next day, he has already watched the film and has it all analyzed and puts notes on it,” says Julie Heimes.
“He’s staying up till like 3 in the morning overseas and watching it live and nothing gets by him that’s for sure,” says Nate Wieseler.
It’s this devotion to his players that makes the Blue Devils salute their head coach from afar.
“He’s definately a role model,” says Nate Wieseler.
“For him to be so dedicated and serving our county that really means a lot to us,” says Landon Wieseler.
“He’s still a big part of the team even though he’s not here every day,” says Steve Wieseler.