Finding His ‘Way’ Land

Ritter Commits to Play Football for WBU

Feb. 17,  senior Carson Ritter will be signing with Wayland Baptist University to play college football tomorrow, Feb. 17, in the GHS auditorium. Ritter plans on going into pre-med and then hopes to get accepted into medical school.

Melissa Ritter

Feb. 17, senior Carson Ritter will be signing with Wayland Baptist University to play college football tomorrow, Feb. 17, in the GHS auditorium. Ritter plans on going into pre-med and then hopes to get accepted into medical school. "My favorite memory of Groom is the State Championship run; specifically the Loraine game." Ritter said, "The eruption of the crowd when we won will always be remembered in my mind."

Mark Meyer, Garet Rocha, Matthew Bowen, K'Leigh Keesee, Cayden Lambert

Article Update – Scroll to the bottom of this article for a video of Carson Ritter representing the Groom FCA at the 2017 Panhandle FCA Victory Banquet on Feb. 26 at the Amarillo Civic Center. He also received the Panhandle FCA Male Athlete of the Year award and scholarship.

In the midst of Tigers young and old, senior Carson Donald Ritter, who took this past season’s all-state spreadback honors, intends to retire his red-and-black six-man gear and commit to don the blue-and-gold uniform of a Wayland Baptist University Pioneer. Ritter’s official signing ceremony will occur at 10 a.m., Feb. 17, in the Groom High School auditorium.

Ritter, part of the graduating class of 2017, has lived in Groom, Texas, his entire life. He’s gone all the way from kindergarten up to 12th grade as a Tiger.

“My favorite memory of Groom is the state championship run; specifically the Loraine game,” Ritter said. “The eruption of the crowd when we won will always be remembered in my mind.”

Groom is a prime example of small-town living, literally. The school has a whopping number of 150 students give or take a few. Ritter just so happens to be one of those 40, who make up the high school enrollment. In his 18 years of living in this small town, he has participated in basketball, football, track, tennis, UIL, one act play, National Honor Society, and he serves as a member of the First Baptist Church youth group.

“He has given 110 percent in everything he has done,” FBC pastor Andy Dietz said. “Carson is proud of Groom and his community, and will represent us well.”

Many from Groom have watched Ritter come up from a young age to where he is now, his mother and father, being his No. 1 fans, have supported him throughout his life and continue to do so.  Ritter said he has felt the community’s support, too.

“I love the way this community and school are so closely knit together and help each other out,” Ritter said. “I wouldn’t trade my community for any other one in the world.”

Moving on from Groom and into the real world can be a punch to the face for some, but for Ritter, he’s got a plan. He plans on not just playing football in college, but also on following a pre-med major and then getting accepted into medical school.

“He’s such a leader and someone I look up to, and I’m so proud of his college choice,” sophomore sister Sydney Ritter said. “I think it’ll be really great for him.”

Principal Stephen Vanderpool indicated Ritter’s opportunities, including fulfilling his goal to play college sports, are coming his way due to the senior’s perseverance.

“This is a good opportunity for Carson. He’s worked very hard for this,” Principal Stephen Vanderpool said. “He is getting the opportunity to follow one of his dreams.”

Most of Ritter’s time is occupied by sports, but he also makes time for his friends, his family and his faith.

“I like that he’s No. 1!” kindergartner Kenzie Weiners said.

His classmates also say they appreciate him.

“I’ve known Carson since seventh grade, and we’ve been pretty close friends since then,” senior Leslie Germany said. “He’s a great friend to have around.”

Ritter has one older brother and two younger sisters. He said they all fight like siblings, but he loves each and every one of them. Through all that he does, he still finds time to be the big brother that he needs to be for his younger sisters and other family members as well as the time to be the little brother that looks up to his big brother.

“It’s kind of funny because the first year of high school we fought like cats and dogs,” Sydney said. “This past year, though, we’ve gotten close, and I know I’ll miss him a ton when he’s gone.”

Other coverage on this topic includes these: http://amarillo.com/sports/2017-02-19/ritter-helping-pave-way-six-man-athletes

Smiling & SigningPhoto of the Day – Feb. 16