EDWARDSVILLE - Josh Anderson brings much potential to Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill., south of Chicago, a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school.

“Josh, unfortunately, had basically a season-ending injury,” Martin said, “and it was unfortunate for him, unfortunate for our team. But the good thing is that he’s still competing.”

Anderson wrestled for the Tigers at 220 pounds and competed in the IHSA Class 3A sectional tournament this past weekend at Joliet Central High School.

“He’s got a chance to finish his senior year competing,” Martin said. “I’m happy for him, and it wasn’t a career-ending injury as far as he’s going to get an opportunity to play college football. So, awesome for him.”

Anderson is very excited to have the chance to play at ONU and is looking ahead to the opportunity. His interest in playing there first came about during his junior year.

“I met with Ryan Smith (the team’s defensive line coach) along with Connor (Hinterser) and Ryan, and I was struck by the by the strong Christian background, and the attitude of how they play football and how they conduct themselves,” Anderson said. “It was a good fit.”

Anderson visited the campus three times, along with a game day visit, and felt that it was a tremendous atmosphere at the school. And another intangible came into play as well.

“Even when I was hurt, they were still contacting me,” Anderson said, “and actively recruiting me.”

Anderson brings a solid work ethic and a competitive background to ONU.

“He’s just a competitor,” Martin said. “He’s a very, very strong kid, a great work ethic. He’ll be a great leader. So, a lot of positives.”

Anderson plans to major in business and hopes to land a human resources position after he graduates, and plans on playing defensive end.

“I bring exactly what I’ve learned in football and wrestling these last four years,” Anderson said, “the ability to work hard and contribute to the team whatever the coaches need me to do to help the team win.”

His favorite memory was the 2017 season, when the Tigers got off to a 0-3 start, then went on to a nine-game winning streak, going all the way to the semifinals of the IHSA Class 8A playoffs before losing to eventual runners-up Wilmette Loyola Academy 17-10.

And as far as goals during his time at ONU, Anderson has two in mind.

“To become the best football player I can be,” Anderson said, “and become the man God has called me to be.”

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