I Like Big Punts and I Cannot Lie: An Interview with Tim Marder

The Spectator got an interview with Tim Marder, one of the captains of the Peglegs, Stuyvesant’s varsity football team.

Reading Time: 4 minutes

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By Zoraiz Irshad

Name: Tim Marder
Grade: 12
Height: 5'11"
Hair color: Brown
Eye color: Blue/Green
DOB: Jan 20, 2001

1. How did you start playing football?

I’ve never pictured myself playing football before high school. I had a negative view of the sport and believed that it was stupid. However, during my freshman year, I befriended many members of the team, who encouraged me to try it out. I attended Spring Ball, the football pre-season during May, and found myself enjoying the sport. I joined for my first official season in [the] August before my sophomore year, which is where it all began.

2. Do you play football outside of school?

Though my teammates and I do not officially play tackle football outside of school, we tend to get together sometimes in the off-season after school on Fridays and scrimmage against each other. Additionally, many of us go to Pier 40 during school breaks to get some extra practice.

3. What are your aspirations for this PSAL season?

Coming back from two consecutive, poor seasons, our desire [to win] games is higher than ever. We recognized the aspects that needed work for us to become a dominating team. Fortunately, we finished our regular season with an 8-1 record, totaling more wins than in the last [three] years combined. My standards for me and my team are at the peak. I’m confident that we will swiftly progress through the playoff stages until we reach the big bucks: the Championship.

4. How does the school’s view of the team affect you and/or your teammates?

We’ve always been seen as the underdog team, especially in recent years. Additionally, it’s always been hard for us to find support among our own peers as they talk more smack than our opposing teams. It was rough showing up to school after game day and having to deal with classmates and teachers mocking us. However, their remarks only pushed us to get better as all we could think about [was] shutting our haters up.

5. What’s the funniest thing that has happened while you’ve been on the team?

This year during our home game against A. Philip Randolph [High School], one of our defensive linemen, [junior] Evan Wong, recovered a fumble from the other team. However, either being really uncoordinated or lacking knowledge of the game; he [started] running the wrong way after picking the ball up. The other team honestly shouldn’t have tackled him and [should have] let him run it all the way back to our own end-zone.

6. Which of your teammates is the funniest?

It’s obviously me.

7. Proudest moment?

After this year’s Homecoming game, I truly realized how thankful I am for being a part of this team. It felt good to win game after game, but I never actually thought about how all of this is the result of hard work. This past off-season has been one of the most productive in Pegleg history. The number of players hitting the weight room and grinding on the field on their own will is higher than ever before. I’m proud of all my teammates, and I know that we undoubtedly deserved every single win.

8. How do you balance schoolwork and being on a team? What advice can you give others?

Practices after school and commute take up around [three] hours, which can be used for homework. However, playing football increases my productivity. I find it difficult to do work if I go home right after school since there’s nothing in between that helps me relax. Football is great because I get to have fun with my close friends and relieve stress from a long school day. So if anyone is hesitant to join a sports team because they worry about managing time, I can assure [them] that the little break between school and homework helps a great deal with productivity.

9. How do you try to constantly improve yourself?

Football is an intensive and physically demanding contact sport, so there are many ways in which my teammates and I had to prepare in the off-season. Lifting weights is a big part of improving for football, as it not only makes us stronger and faster, but also allows our bodies to handle big hits. Each player knows their weaknesses, so they know what specifics need work. I joined Stuy[vesant]’s track team last year because I recognized my speed [was] my weakness. Thanks to that decision, my playing style improved dramatically.

10. What will you miss most about being on the team?

My teammates and I consider each other family, which is what we love most about being on this team. I can assure anyone that I’ve formed the strongest bonds with the group of people I play football with, and they will continue to get stronger even after our last football season is over. The friendships that are created on this team are incredibly remarkable and last a lifetime. Though we will continue to talk and hang out, playing such an amazing game together will be missed.

11. Who is your biggest role model/inspiration?

Ever since I was very young, nothing was ever just given to me. My father has always been very strict and [has] the highest standards. If I ever wanted something, my father would make me work for it one way or another. This mentality helped me a lot with both football and everyday life. Though my father no longer tells me what to do, the lessons I’ve learned have been ingrained into me, and I took over his role in pushing myself to work my hardest to achieve robust outcomes.

Choice drink: Arizona
Favorite food: Sushi
Motto to live by: “Dreams don’t work unless you do.”
Fun fact: I weigh as much as the average NFL receiver, so say wassup.