Your donation will support the student journalists of Kirkwood High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.
March 9, 2020
Randy Kriewall, Jeremy’s basketball coach at KHS, remembers one of his first conversations with Jeremy during his freshman basketball season.
“[I was] thinking this is a big moment for the kid, here’s the varsity coach. And I said, ‘We really want you to come up and play on varsity,’” Kriewall said. “His response was, ‘Well, I can’t until the freshman season is over because I made a commitment to these guys when we started the year, and I’m not going to break that commitment. So when we’re done [with the freshman season], I’d be happy to do that.’ And I [thought], ‘Who is this guy? What kid, as a freshman, thinks that way?’”
Kriewall said he was impressed right away with how Jeremy put other people first. In the same way, after walking away from playing professional football, Jeremy returned to KHS to help other people through coaching. As a coach, Jeremy primarily works with wide receivers for the KHS football team, and he coaches other aspects of the team as well. Jay Maclin, also a wide receiver, is currently playing his senior season at KHS this year before continuing the family tradition of going to Mizzou on a football scholarship. Jay said he has noticed how all of his KHS teammates respect Jeremy, knowing he made it to the highest level.
“He doesn’t need a job, but he just wants to help,” Jay said. “He wants our team, he wants Kirkwood to be great. He knows that people look up to him here, so him being here is appreciated by everyone.”
According to KHS Principal Dr. Michael Havener, what Jeremy brings to the table as a coach goes beyond football experience, but life experience as well. Havener said Jeremy has a bigger impact on helping people due to his hard work and everything he has overcome.
“Obviously, he’s knowledgeable about football, and that’s great, but I think he’s more of a mentor and [he] will take students [and] impact their personal lives. [They will] learn from him and grow into outstanding individuals who are successful,” Havener said. “Whether we score an additional touchdown because he’s a coach, that’s great, but the more important thing is that mentorship he provides to not only football players, but people in general.”
First, Jeremy was a Pioneer. Then he became a Tiger. After that, an Eagle, a Chief and a Raven.
And now, he is a Pioneer again.
“It’s surreal, going back to where it all started.”