As dedicated and focused as he is on football, 20-year-old National player Jeremy Garrett has a vision and is realistic about the different aspects of life. Earlier this year, in a feature with Newsroom Sport, Garrett spoke about ‘academics before football’ and now a few months later, he feels as though his words were misconstrued by fans and society at large.
In an exclusive interview with The 592 Dugout, Garrett reflected on this and explained what he meant.
He is currently two courses away from graduating with a diploma in Rehabilitation Science from the Louisiana State University Eunice (LSU). The youngster was supposed to graduate in the last semester, however the Covid-19 pandemic came and due to issues and glitches with the online courses, Garrett is currently redoing those courses in order to graduate.
Jeremy revealed; “On the note of academics before football, I think some people got the wrong concept of the phrase, some people believe that I said or meant that football is not my thing, that I’m focusing on academics”.
“That is not so, what people need to realize is that there is life after football, it is not a case of me putting football aside. What I meant, is that at the end of the day, I still have to do academics regardless because I have to make a life of my own, that is what I really meant”.
He noted; “It is something that is affecting Guyanese footballers, Caribbean footballers as a whole, you see it all the time,when you retire you just live on a name or you’re remembered by people as ‘Yeah he was the goal scorer’. I don’t want to be remembered like that, I still have a life to live, you cannot play football until you’re 50-years-old”.
“That is what I meant when I said academics before football, yes it is my life, I love it, I am going to work hard and be determined but at the end of the day, there is life after football, as we all know everything takes time and nothing lasts forever”.
Garrett who grew up in what most consider the ‘ghetto’ in Tucville had a strong message for youngsters coming up.
“My message every time to the youth is to remain humble, I know there will be times when it would seem like you’re wasting your time, you question yourself; ‘What am I doing all this training for?’ You would become frustrated, peer pressure would step in and other pillars of negativity, my message is always to stay focused and remain humble”.
The outspoken defender continued; “Listen to your parents, listen to what they have to say, go out and train, I can tell you of instances where you would go and workout for a couple of hours and when you return home, I know of kids and myself, we have been in situations where food isn’t there as yet and you are hungry, desperation would step in, but remember every long road has an end, nothing lasts forever. It wouldn’t be that way forever”.
“If your goal is to become a professional footballer, if you’d like to do good and be good, do the right thing, nobody is perfect but just stay focused, take in your education and focus on school, at the end of the day there is life after football. As much as you might love the game, you still have to focus on your academics as a youngster”.