BY PETE MOHR | AUGUST 8, 2012
Meet the Football Falcon senior …
At just about this same time last year, I came upon Cody Folts watching practice from under the shade tree on the west sideline. He was wearing school clothes – not the football uniform I’d expected. “Why?” this reporter was obliged to ask. Cody explained, with obvious sadness, that his third concussion had probably ended his football playing days. He didn’t need my opinion, but I volunteered one anyway. I commended his good judgment for choosing permanence of good health over the immediacy of playing high school football. But I knew the 2011 Falcons had lost a valuable prospective receiver.
Several weeks later, Kyle Gladstone went down for the season, his left ACL torn in a simple practice drill. Now, suddenly, quarterback Bryce Kinsler had been deprived of two counted-on targets. Head Coach Greg Davis must have been wondering if the football stars had aligned against him.
I’m glad to report both Cody and Kyle are back. Last January, when Cody sensed the spirited vibes coming from his weight-lifting and conditioning teammates, he felt the itch to play again. With qualified support from his sports medicine specialist in Scottsdale, Cody came up with what I’ll call the “Cody Compromise”: he’d rejoin the Football Falcons – but only as a candidate to be a placekicker (kickoffs, field goals and P.A.T.s). His Creeker parents, Randy and Susan Folts, signed on.
So here is Cody, eagerly looking forward to each Thursday’s placekicking competition held by Coach David and Assistant Coach Bell Seiler. Cody’s rivals? Twin brother, Connor, and classmate Nick Molchan. May the stronger (and more accurate) foot win!
Cody Folts vs. Connor Folts: “sibling rivalry” on the football field. Three sets of twins (Folts, Fisher, and Baciewicz) make for an interesting “angle”; but I prefer to write about the “sibling loyalty” Cody steadfastly demonstrated throughout the entire 2011 season. Whenever I showed up at practice, Cody was always there – either standing alone or sitting with Head Athletic Trainer Courtney Runner in her electric cart. I’m sure Cody will excuse my disgressing to opine that “Trainer”, as I’m wont to call her, is the most unappreciated person in Cactus Shadows sports. Keep these Falcons on the field, "Trainer!" Now to particulars about Cody Folts.
He was born Cody Morgan Folts on September 2, 1994 in Tucson. Eligible this November to vote in his first Presidential Election, he assured me he will not cast his ballot for Barack Obama! Speaking about the imperious Hawaiian (or is he Kenyan?), I joked with Cody that in 1980, America was proud of comic icon Bob Hope, country music legend Johnny Cash and President Ronald Reagan. Today, we have no hope, no cash, and President Obama! My boss, Don Sorchych, is flying me to the imminent Democratic National Convention to infuriate The Liberal Left with that bit of political humor. I’m not expecting to survive the likes of TV propagandists Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz and Rachel Maddow!
Cody and Connor, identical twins, are Randy and Susan’s third and fourth children. Older sister Lauren, 22, is a rising senior Sun Devil. Older brother Justin (CSHS ’10), 20, is a rising junior at U of A. Sports fans may remember Justin as a standout goalkeeper for the 2009-10 Soccer Falcons. If Cody moves on to college, his choice will probably be ASU. Otherwise, he’s considering military service, his preferred branch undecided.
The Folts family moved to Cave Creek in 2000. Cody first played Youth Football as a 6th grader. He graduated from Desert Arroyo Middle School. His favorite football memories to date flash him back to pregame spirit cheers when he was a freshman Falcon. In our interview, Cody talked pointedly about the “respect” and “comfort” he and his senior teammates have with each other. “We’re really good friends … best friends,” he declares. Cody sees that bonding among the seniors as the foundation for a “very successful” season.
“Coach Greg” knows I’ll never coach a snap, but here’s a suggestions to help stand Cody safe from a fourth concussion: let Connor or Nick handle the kickoffs; Cody, stick to the field goals and P.A.T.s. I’m certain Randy and Susan will second my motion.
Cody, welcome back to football! May all your P.A.T.s at "The Nest" either smack the Beckham scoreboard or splash into the YMCA pool!