By: Martin Schlegel
Before every game, home or away, senior quarterback Demetrius Carr gestures to the sky.
Running onto the turf while pointing to the heavens, Carr honors his grandparents.
“It’s my acknowledgement of them,” Carr said. “(The team) always prays before games. I always pray to my grandparents who weren’t able to see me in a college football game.”
A supremely family-oriented man, the Dragon’s fifth-year starting quarterback closes out his last season on the field as one of MSUM’s best.
Carr has broken several MSUM records throughout his college career. He’s the all-time leader in passing yards with 7,509, he owns the single-game record for passing yards with 507, and he’s closing in on another; total offense.
Even though the record-breaking means a lot, Carr said the focus has always been on the daily grind.
“If I try to focus on the records, then I get away from my style of play and our offensive style,” Carr said.
In his first year, Carr hardly had a chance to develop his style of play as his career at MSUM started rather unfortunate. He barely got off the ground in first season before it ended due to a stress fracture in his foot.
However, the season-ending injury wasn’t the only problem Carr dealt with. He admitted he wasn’t a great teammate and struggled with his confidence as a football player. Carr said he was under the impression that the team and coaches didn’t want him.
“I had my selfish ways of saying they don’t like me, and I would bring that negative energy toward my teammates,” Carr said. “Having that negative energy would bring the morale down.”
Not only was Carr struggling to adjust to MSUM’s football culture, he was still getting acclimated to the Moorhead community. From Naperville, Illinois, Carr had just two familiar faces to turn to: his daughter, Bella, and his girlfriend, Chelsea.
At times, Carr said he wanted to drop out of MSUM and move back home.
“Having Chelsea and Bella here as my support and my rock have been a huge thing for me,” Carr said. “If they weren’t here, I don’t know if I’d still be (at MSUM).”
Realizing his potential as a person and as an athlete, Carr transitioned from a young, immature teammate to a team captain. The team’s motto, “Do what’s right,” is something he lives by.
“It’s helped me in every aspect of my life from being a team captain to being a father and going to classes,” Carr said. “Being able to have that instilled in me now, like I didn’t have my freshman year, it’s changed my life. Looking back seeing how irresponsible and selfish I was being (in my first year), was a big part me growing up and maturing.”
For Carr, having camaraderie with his teammates is the most gratifying part of his time on the team.
“I can have all these accolades, I can have all these different types of awards, but the main thing that matters to me is the perception of the teammates that look upon me,” Carr said. “It feels great to know that I have their support and they have mine.”
After college, Carr will leave MSUM with more than his name etched in the record books.
“The leadership lessons that I’ve learned helped me become a better person,” Carr said. “If I completely forget about how I grow as a person then I won’t be as good of a father, or an employee, or anything in life. The leadership and friendships are the biggest things I’ll take away from college.”