Fort Osage senior Dakota Robertson and Indians football coach Brock Bult are two men who are forged from the same sheet of iron.
They don’t say a lot, but when they do, you better be listening.
They have a passion for football and their love of Fort Osage is evident in everything they say and do.
That is why it is so special that the four-year bond resulted in Robertson being named The Examiner’s 2019 Defensive Player of the Year.
“I am extremely proud of Dakota and the player and young man he has become,” Bult said. “He was a leader of our team and he put team first throughout his entire career.”
Robertson was a driving force in the Indians’ march to the 2018 Class 5 state championship game and made sure the 2019 team enjoyed great success even though they lost many of the starters off the 2018 squad.
“He became a dominant player with a hand down, and from a two-point stance,” added Bult, who switched roles in 2019, going from the team’s defensive coordinator to working on the offensive side of the ball.
“He also helped on offense by learning to play tight end his senior year. I will never forget our conversation about playing defensive line his junior year. He didn't want to do it, but agreed to play it to make the team better. We wouldn't have made the state championship game had he not put the needs of the team ahead of his desires.”
And those desires still burn bright, as Robertson is waiting for that elusive phone call from a college coach who is seeking a player with Robertson’s strong skill set.
“I have been playing football since I was 5 years old,” Robertson said, “and I’ve been going to Fort Osage football games for about that many years, too.
“Football is my life, my passion, it’s all I think about. I live, eat, breath and sleep football and that is why this award means so much to me. So many other great Fort Osage football players won this award, and to have my name mentioned with them is really special.”
The 6-foot-2, 225-pound linebacker/lineman hybrid had another big year leading the Indians, after a slow start, to a 6-5 record and into the district championship game. He recorded 72 tackles (49 solo), 16 tackles for loss, seven sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, one interception and one blocked kick. He was named to the Class 5 all-state second team by the Missouri High School Football Coaches Association and was named the Suburban Middle Seven Defensive Player of the Year.
Suddenly, his voice softens, with a touch of vulnerability that is never present when he talks about the game he loves and dominates.
“I don’t have any college offers, and it’s scary to think that I might have played my last game,” Robertson said. “I don’t even want to think about that.
“Maybe a coach will read this story and call Coach Bult and ask about me. Maybe I’ll get picked to play in the (Missouri vs. Kansas) All-Star Game and a coach will see me.
“I have so much to give, all I’m asking for is a chance.”