For Daniel Aladgham, playing football seemed like it was foreign.
Aladgham never played football as a kid but loved the sport. That’s why his story of his unlikely path toward becoming a quarterback at Lafayette High School is truly unique.
“I didn't even have a position,” Aladgham told News 12. “I was here at every position they would move me around even though I wasn't good.”
Aladgham signed up for the football team in his freshman year, but trying to find a position was difficult. He got very little playing time. There was even one road game he decided not to bring his helmet.
But Aladgham kept pushing, and his coach Armando Cataldi saw something.
“Right over there he asked me, ‘do you want some quarterback reps?'" Aladgham said. “He never saw me throw a ball, never even threw a ball myself. I worked hard at first. I was terrible. No one in practice even wanted me to throw for them. COVID happened, while everyone else was sitting at home I was out working.”
“Did I see something special? Probably,” said Cataldi. “I’m a former quarterback so maybe we have that instinctive thing.”
Cataldi is now in his third year at Lafayette and Aladgham hasn’t missed a practice.
“I'm glad that he made that decision for me,” Aladgham added. “I accepted it, and I worked. I'm a worker, I'm not lazy.”
Aladgham is now the starting quarterback for Lafayette and has evolved into a team leader. He’s also one of this week’s nominees for the “Heart of a Giant Award," given by the New York Giants to high school football players from all over the tri-state area who show commitment, teamwork and character.