WINTERVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – The Winterville Colts 9-year-old football team is just like any other young football team trying to learn the game of football. But, the Colts have a special player on their team, Demetrius Williams. However, he’s known by a special nickname.
“We call him, Little Coach,” said Colts coach, Ricky Hines. “He was an assistant coach and when I was walking out on the field, I likely fell over from Coach, he was right there when I be out there fussing with the referees, he’s going ‘come on ref!’ and man, he’s just been a part of us ever since.”
Little Coach’s journey to playing football wasn’t easy. Demetrius’ mother died during his birth, causing him to be still born. Thankfully, the doctors were able to save Demetrius.
Today, Little Coach is taken care of by his grandfather, Connie Williams. But Williams started to become concerned when Demetrius was not walking or crawling at 18-months-old.
“We took him to getting tests ran on him and stuff like that and they diagnosed him with cerebral palsy,” said Williams. “He didn’t start walking until he was four. He was held back and he didn’t start walking until he was four. I never treated him any different from his brothers and he strived and kept striving and kept striving and when he started walking, that’s when his whole world turnaround, our whole world turned around.”
Not only is Little Coach walking, but he now scores touchdowns for the Colts. The last play of every game is always a handoff to number one.
“When he gets out there and we are able to make that happen for him, give him a chance to interact and be a part of the game, that’s super for me and I know it’s super for him,” said Hines.
“He’s happy, I record everyone of them, I got everyone of them recorded and I go home and look at it and if I get bored on the job, I’ll play them back and look at it and he kind of keeps me going,” said Williams.
Demetrius always has a positive attitude and it’s clear to see the love his teammates have for him and that he has for them.
“If one third of the world was like him, we wouldn’t even need police, with the love that he carries for people,” said Williams. “I mean, it’s a blessing, it’s just a blessing getting to see him strive and do what he do.”