Nava-Esparza off to Blair Cliff

File photo: Angel Nava-Esparza during the 2019 season. 

EL CENTRO — Central Spartan football standout, Angel Nava-Esparza, committed to Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, June 15, where he will continue to crack pads on the gridiron.

“They (Blair Cliff coaching staff) reached out to me this month and I talked it over with my parents who were incredibly supportive, at which point I had a week and a half to decide,” said Nava-Esparza.

Nava-Esparza spoke to various schools before making the decision to Briar Cliff.

“Multiple coaches from Briar Cliff contacted me who were very supportive and outgoing, which caught my attention,” said Nava-Esparza. “Coach Pena helped me sending my film everywhere and I was blessed enough by Briar Cliff who sent me the offer.”

As per Nava-Esparza, he’s been maintaining conditioning during the lock down and has been trying to stay as strong and healthy as possible by running sprints, lifting weights, and staying as active as he normally would during spring football.

“The first coach that contacted me was the linebacker coach but then the offensive coordinator contacted me,” said Nava-Esparza. “So, for right now, as I know, I will be going in as a running back since he asked me my preference and I selected RB.”

According to Nava-Esparza, the kinesiology program at Briar Cliff made a major impact in his decision.

“Not many of the other schools that I spoke with offered that major,” said Nava-Esparza. “If football doesn’t work out, I would still do my best to remain in school and successfully complete my major, get my bachelor’s degree, and hopefully one day become a physical therapist or something along those lines.”

Nava-Esparza highlighted how his parents are his biggest inspiration.

“I just want to make sure I make them proud and to make sure they didn’t waste those years away, taking me to practice and buying me equipment,” said Nava-Esparza. “So, now I want to work hard at this opportunity I currently have at Briar Cliff. Seeing how my parents are determined and passionate about what I want to do has motivated me to give back to them and not let them down.”

As per Nava-Esparza, his short-term goal is to stay as healthy and as in shape as possible while knocking out formalities before potentially heading out in early August. His long-term goal is to make it as far as he can in football and perform at his fullest potential.

“To the underclassmen, always keep grinding because now especially with this COVID-19 stuff, you never know when the last time you’re going to step out on that field or on campus,” said Nava-Esparza. “Don’t take anything for granted and work as hard as you can.”

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