BUCO quarterback Chris Helbig commits to Southern Utah University

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chris helbig

National Signing Day saw several talented athletes commit to schools all over the nation to pursue their dreams at the next level.

One of these commitments included Butler Community College quarterback Chris Helbig, who elected to continue his college football career at Southern Utah University on Tuesday night.

The 6-4, 210 pound sophomore won eight of the 11 games he played in for the Grizzlies this season. He threw for a total of 1,661 yards, 16 touchdowns and 12 interceptions, averaging 151 yards passing per game.

But it wasn’t too long ago that Helbig thought football may not even be a part of his life anymore. That all changed when the Colorado native picked up a couple of offers from larger programs.

chris helbig

“I think it was really when Southern Utah brought me on a visit. It’s close to home. It was the thought I had a chance to play in front of my family. When I took my visit, I really enjoyed it, I really liked the coaches. So that kind of made me realize how much I did really want to play. So I guess that was the biggest thing, just being able to go check out some schools and see that was what I wanted to do.”

Helbig feels BUCO has given him all the tools he needs to be successful with a larger program. Being a quarterback, he specifically credits the defense he practiced against day in and day out for his development.

“Just the talent you play against and the practices every day. Our defense. Looking at all of the guys committing and signing right now, our defense is up there with the best of them. When you look at where our guys are going and how many guys are going, it says a lot.”

“So, just practicing against them every day, seeing all their different looks kind of helped me out as a quarterback. Going on to the next level, I think that’s going to be big. Also the game speed, and playing against the dudes I was playing against will help.”

BUCO may be a junior college powerhouse, but it’s still no major university. Helbig knows this, and he’s prepared for the challenges becoming a Thunderbird will bring.

“Butler is a junior college, so that means there’s still a lot of guys developing. So going into a school where there’s a lot of guys that are older and more developed is different. Just doing what I can to mature is important, and growing and developing and making myself into a four-year player instead of a two-year player.”

While Helbig is excited to begin the next chapter of his life and football career, he’ll forever appreciate his time living in Kansas and attending BUCO. Anyone who’s ever been to Kansas knows there’s not much to do there. It’s a plain state. But it’s because of this Helbig believes he was able to build such great friendships with his teammates, which he’ll miss more than anything.

“Definitely the friendships. There wasn’t much to do in Kansas or at Butler. But you build really good friendships with the players and other people.”

Things look brighter than ever for Helbig at this point. After all, Butler has sent quarterbacks on to the NFL after they transfer to a four-year institution. The most recent of these is current free agent quarterback Zach Mettenberger, who was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in 2014. Quarterback Zac Taylor accomplished something similar, signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after going undrafted in 2007.

Southern Utah may be no LSU or Nebraska, but it still gives Helbig an opportunity to hit it big. While it all sounds nice, the young quarterback has focused himself on life beyond the field.

“I do think about those things a little bit. But I try to just control what I can and every day to just do the best that I can to be the best person I can be – athletically and socially. All of that stuff would be nice, and I believe it all comes with time. The biggest thing is just taking it day by day,” he said. “I’m going to study something in business. I’m a little undecided, but I’ve considered going into real estate back home in Colorado when I’m done playing.”

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