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Kendrick Honors Kolby Anderson's Legacy, Retires No. 42
Keegan Anderson will be the last Kendrick Tiger to wear No. 42, honoring the memory of his late brother
Published: 7/2/2020 4:51:20 PM

For three years, no football player at Kendrick High School will don No. 42.

That is, until Keegan Anderson steps onto campus. 

The Kendrick football coaching staff, following the tragic death of Kolby Anderson in a car accident June 3, announced at Kolby’s funeral service the number’s retirement. 

According to Head Football Coach Zane Hobart, Kolby’s impact on the coaching staff in just two short years on varsity was unprecedented. No one, Hobart said, could possibly match the incredible work ethic and determination 16-year-old Kolby exhibited on a daily basis. 

"I don’t think I’ve seen anyone with a better work ethic,” Hobart said.

The retirement will only be temporary, as Kolby’s younger brother Keegan, who wore Kolby’s home jersey to the funeral service, will be granted the opportunity to wear the number once he reaches the varsity level. 

Once Keegan completes his four years at Kendrick, No. 42 will retire forever.

"He was always willing to work a little bit harder and a little bit longer than the guy next to him, and that drive and passion wore off on everyone around him,” said Kendrick Assistant Football Coach Timothy Olson. “Even as a sophomore, he was one of our best leaders in the weight room and was someone that everyone on the team respected.”

But retiring his jersey isn’t the only way the Tigers plan on honoring Kolby’s legacy. Kendrick will grant a community funded-scholarship to one athlete a year that exemplifies all the Tiger superstar embodied.

“When you think of Kolby, you think of drive and work ethic,” Hobart said. “Those are going to be the traits an athlete will have to have to receive that scholarship.”

According to Hobart, while most of the scholarship details are still being ironed out, a majority of the funds will be garnered from the Kendrick community, a community Kolby did his best to improve. 

“It wasn’t just his football family that realized how hard Kolby worked, it was the whole community,” Hobart said.

But Kolby didn’t just make an impact on the football field. The three-sport athlete also made lifelong impressions on his track and basketball coaches as well.

Tim Silflow, Kendrick’s head boys basketball coach, said Kolby brought his football-style intensity to the hardwood on a daily basis, which sometimes landed the young Tiger in sticky situations.

“He was a football player through and through. That’s what he lived for,” Silflow said. “But him being a football player led to him spending a lot of time on the bench in foul trouble.” 

According to many of Kolby’s coaches, his sophomore season became the year he started to become the man many knew him to be shortly before his death. Always reserved and respectful, Hobart said season two for Kolby quickly became filled with quips and jokes, a surprise for much of the coaching staff.

“When he was young, he was very quiet. He was a ‘yes sir’ type of kid,” he said. “His sophomore year, he began breaking out of his shell. He’s a funny kid, absolutely hilarious, and it caught all of our coaching staff off guard.”

But while Kolby started to relax as high school went on, Olson said he never lost his trademarked respect for authority, which was no more apparent than when the pair attended Montana Tech’s eight-man football camp. 

“Kolby usually played tight end or fullback for us, but due to the numbers, we had to stick him at center. He did it with no questions asked, no whining, and did exceptionally well at it for never playing the position before,” Olson said. “His play even had us coaches thinking about making a switch for the season because he looked so solid.”

But just as his coaches began pondering the idea of Kolby at center, he showcased his unparalleled athletic ability in the open field.

“In typical driven-Kolby fashion he proved us wrong. On his first carry, he stiff armed and maneuvered past defenders for a beautiful 45-yard touchdown run, almost like he was telling us ‘I'm too good with the ball in my hands to move to center.’ That was Kolby. He would do anything you asked of him without a peep, but he was going to work his butt off to prove he belonged where he wanted to be.”

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