On Friday night, Jim Hightower earned his second state championship as the head coach of the St. Thomas More Cougars.
Leading the charge for his offense was one of the best quarterbacks in Cougar history, Caleb Holstein.
The Harvard commit is in the St. Thomas More record books for most career passing yards and most career passing touchdowns. When asked what he wanted his legacy to be at St. Thomas More, his off the field impact mattered just as much as what he did on the field.
“I just want to be known for being good at what I did, but also I wanna be known for being a really good teammate,” Holstein says. “Someone that included everybody.”
Holstein has been playing for the Cougars since his sophomore year in 2017, when STM lost in the semifinals. As the starting quarterback his junior season, the Cougars made it to the Dome but fell short to U-High. The third time was the charm for the Cougars. Holstein ended his high school career with a 58-10 win over the De La Salle Cavaliers to claim the Division II state championship at Cougar Stadium.
“Just relief that you’re not going to end out your season on a loss,” Holstein says. “That really sucks. The last game of the season you lose. I feel bad for anybody that has to feel that. I’m just glad I don’t have to feel that this year. You know, they’re a great team. They have some really good players. We had a great team. We fought hard. We had a very physical football team tonight. I think that took us to what we did.”
Walking off the field for the last time at St. Thomas More, Holstein was thanked by a loud standing ovation from the Cougar fan base after throwing for 343 yards and five touchdowns.
“It’s just great being able to finish it off at the place where I’ve spent the past four years here working hard off-season and in-season,” Holstein says. “It’s awesome.”
“That was really special to be able to do that,” Hightower says. “He’s such a good young man. His character is better than his arm. He’s just a super leader. He’s very humble. He doesn’t like to get any attention on himself. He shares it all with his teammates. He’s just a super young man.”
Holstein also won the Most Outstanding Player award for the Cougars following the game. To shed some light on just what kind of teammate he is, he was quick to tell us after the game that he thought that his receiver Jack Bech was more deserving of the award than he was.