He’s a national champion

Suggs continues with his passion for football


Ivory Sanders

Deans assistant Keith Suggs recently won a national championship playing football with the Marion County Crusaders.

Adrian Reese, sports editor

Most people at Ben Davis know Keith Suggs as a regular dean or some dude that’s just in the hallway yelling at kids every day. But do you know the real coach Suggs?

Suggs, a 2011 Ben Davis graduate, was one of the best defensive backs in the state his senior year here. He played two years collegiately at the University of Toledo and finished his college career at Southern Illinois.

Now he’s a national champion in football.

“That was pretty special,” Suggs said last week after coming home from Florida with a football national championship. “A lot of hard work went into that.”

Suggs plays defensive back for the Marion County Crusaders, a semi-pro football team that plays in the Minor League Football Alliance. The Crusaders recently won that league’s national title in Daytona, Florida.

That was a long trip, not just in miles but in our journey to get there.

— Keith Suggs

“That was a long trip, not just in miles but in our journey to get there,” Suggs said two days after the game.

The Crusaders are a group of high school and collegiate football players who desire to continue playing the game and possibly getting another shot at bigger football opportunities. Most of the players get $25 per game to play, so they are there for the love of the game, not the pay check.

It is also a chance to play at a high level showcasing their talent. Suggs has played three seasons for the Crusaders and has won two championships in three seasons.  Suggs admits he’s not in it for the championship riungs.

“In all honestly I hate saying it because I know these guys that I play with — these are some of the biggest things they accomplished — but for me I do it for them,” Suggs said. “For me it’s more of just being a piece to their puzzle,and helping them achieve the things they want to achieve.”

Suggs excelled at Toledo and Southern Illinois and had a chance to try out in the NFL. Now, Suggs is a role model to Ben Davis student athletes and is a great example that working hard toward a goal — in his case, a football goal — is worth the efforts.

“I’m just having fun and enjoying still playing,” he said. “If you work hard enough at something, good things will happen.”