While playing high school football at Wichita Collegiate, Wesley Fair admits that he was able to survive simply by being a better athlete than everybody else on the football field. He didn’t need to have a mastery of football intelligence to be the most impactful player because he was that much better than everybody else on the field most Friday nights.
Fair enrolled early at K-State in January as a member of the Wildcats’ top-40 nationally ranked 2023 recruiting class as a three-star safety. But since joining the Kansas State football roster a couple of weeks into January, Fair, admits that college football has brought an aggressive change in lifestyle.
Early morning alarm sounds followed by constant productivity for nearly 12 hours a day have been the biggest adjustment for Fair as he gets accustomed to playing college football. The Kansas State staff is attempting to add about 10 pounds of muscle to his 185-pound frame, which is requiring him to take in about five meals each day. His schedule is full, but finding a crumb left on his plate or a drop left in a protein shake is like finding a snowball in the middle of an Arizona summer — impossible.
“There’s a couple of guys that I’ve been gravitating to and learning from,” Fair says. “One of them is Kobe Savage, obviously, he played strong safety last year, and so me learning from him is huge. Trying to gain as much as I can.”
Savage, who played in 10 games last season for Kansas State as a junior college transfer before suffering a season-ending leg injury that required surgery, is one of the most avid film watchers on the K-State roster.
“Every time I watch film,” Fair said. “He’s in the right spot, so that’s one of the reasons I gravitate towards him is because he knows what he’s talking about. He’s a leader and a good person.”
Fair, who has watched film in the past, is now learning how to do it in a manner that is the most conducive to learning schemes of K-State’s defense, proper technique for strong safety and gaining an understanding of what to look for.
“One thing I’m doing well right now is taking notes when I’m in film sessions and meetings with coaches,” Fair said. “Just making sure I’m taking notes and later in the day going over the notes and making sure I actually know it.”
Grasping the playbook, though, has been a challenge for the incoming freshmen. It’s much thicker than anything else he is used to memorizing on the football. But Fair is meeting daily with K-State’s defensive staff, seeking answers to questions.
“It’s a lot different. It’s way more in-depth,” Fair said. “So I’ve been in the coach’s office every single day learning and learning. I’m really excited because I’ve learned so much, and I think it’s really going to help me out.”
No longer is Wesley Fair going to be able to take advantage of the size, speed and strength advantage he has on other players in one-on-one battles on a football field very often. Instead, he knows he has to become a smarter football player, so he’s taking the early opportunities with K-State to learn.
“I think the biggest thing is learning the playbook,” Fair said. “When you are out there, knowing what’s happening, you’ll be able to slow the game down and know where you are supposed to be. I think that is one of the biggest things over athleticism.”
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