Alex Forsyth: Lion-hearted son - KPTV - FOX 12

Alex Forsyth: Lion-hearted son

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WEST LINN, OR (KPTV) -

A state champion to the new-look Ducks: West Linn High School senior offensive lineman Alex Forsyth is excited as ever to wear the green and yellow.

Forsyth is a verbal commitment to the university and football program that he has grown up loving and admiring. These great life achievements have been earned to the soon-to-be 18-year-old who lost his biggest fan four Decembers ago. 

"One of our coaches the night before the game was like, 'You guys realize, you are legends if you get this done? If you win the state championships, you are the first ones to ever do it,'” said Alex Forsyth. 
                
The thrill of a perfect, undefeated 6A Oregon state championship season isn't lost on Forsyth.

"I just look back on that and think, 'Wow, we really made a mark here,'" he said. 

The two-way player for West Linn was one of 35 seniors who roared to the first crown for the Lions in year three under former Duck quarterback Chris Miller. 

"I am very, very close to Coach Miller and I look up to him as a male figure. He's an awesome role model for me," Forsyth said. 

Forsyth was in the eighth grade when he lost his first role model four years ago. Steve Forsyth, Alex's father, was one of two innocent victims killed in the Clackamas Town Center Mall on Dec. 11, 2012.

"You never see that stuff coming. It is extremely unfortunate but you kind of have to roll with the punches that life throws at you," said Forsyth. 

His West Linn teammates honored Mr. Forsyth this season with an "SF" decal on the back of their helmets.

"It was unbelievable. Mitchell Johnson, before the game, our linebacker, said, 'Hey, we are doing this for your dad.' It really hit home," said Forsyth. "He wants me to go out and dominate these guys in front of me and just win the game for him so I kind of channeled that energy into motivation to win the game, to win a state championship."

Those emotions began to seep out of the 6'5", 307-pounder as the Lions' record-breaking offense left the field, with a running clock, linked arm in arm. 

"I kind of looked up, this is crazy, I said a little prayer and was like, 'Oh my gosh, this is unbelievable,' and I started tearing up," said Forsyth. 

Another holiday season will pass without him, but Steve Forsyth left an indelible mark on his lion-hearted son. 

"I just remember what he always told me. Never give up. Never fall under the circumstances that life puts on you," said Forsyth. "That just relates to so much more stuff than just football, it just relates to so much in life in general. You can apply it to anything. Whenever you can't, just keep on pushing through. There are people in worse situations than you are. You just have to make the best of it." 

Making the best of his raw ability and sharpening his talents under Miller and the West Linn coaching staff, the offensive lineman will make his Duck commitment official when he signs his national letter of intent on Feb. 1.

"I never had a thought in my mind that I could ever play there," he said. 

This young "Man of Oregon" was recruited by Steve Greatwood under Mark Helfrich's watch at University of Oregon 

"The uncertainty is also exciting and it also brings hope," said Forsyth. 

Forsyth has the "juice" that new Ducks head coach Willie Taggart is in search of. 

 "He was really energetic. Just talking about a winning mentality and his philosophy," said Forsyth. 

The verbal commit spoke by phone with Coach Taggart last week.

"He's talking about 'do something,' buckle up … just that you come with the philosophy every day that you are going to work your butt off," said Forsyth. 

Working his tail off is something this Duck has done with Lion Pride in honor of his father.  

Signing Day falls in the same month as Forsyth's birthday, sharing the same birthdate with his dad, Feb. 13.

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