St. Paul High School’s Adam Albertini will suit up Saturday night to represent his school and East squad in the 47th annual Kansas Shrine Bowl.
For Adam he will not only have the guidance of his coaches in preparing for the game Saturday, but also the insight of older brother Anthony.
Anthony Albertini, who like his brother will play football for Division 2’s Pittsburg State University this fall, played 2 years ago in the 2018 Shrine Bowl. His insight into the practice structure, weeks activities, atmosphere and more will no doubt be a big help to not just his younger brother, but also to the East squad.
Eastern Kansas Sports caught up with the Anthony on his perspective of now being in the stands and helping his brother prepare for this weekend’s game.
The 47th annual Kansas Shrine Bowl will kick-off Saturday night at 7 PM and can be heard on WIBW 580AM, seen on YouTube , or heard across the state on the following radio stations: KXKU- Hutchinson, KINA- Salina, KQMA- Phillipsburg, KVSV – Beloit, KNZA – Holton/Hiawatha, and KMZA – Sabetha.
Eastern Kansas Sports: When did you play in the Kansas Shrine Bowl and which position?
Anthony Albertini: I played in the 2018 Shrine Bowl. I played defensive end, which was different than any position I had ever played before, and I also played a little bit of Kickoff return.
EKS: Describe the practices leading up to the Shrine Bowl game. What made them difficult and/or memorable to you?
AA: The practices were definitely trying. Not because we ran all practice or really tried to kill each other, but because we had so much to install and review in just one week. I think what made them the most memorable though was how interesting it was to watch everything come together. When we started at the beginning of the week both sides of the ball didn’t look very promising, but by the end of the week we looked like a team filled with the best players in the state.
EKS: Other than the football practices and game aspect of the Shrine Bowl, what other activities did the Shriners have lined out for the participants when you played?
AA: Other than the football activities, we had numerous different things on our agenda. One night we had a big steak dinner, and then one afternoon we had an afternoon at the pool. The activity that I found most interesting though, and I’m sure my teammates would agree, was when we had a day with the kids. That was a day where we got to learn and see first hand what some of the kids that utilize the Shriners hospital go through on a daily basis, and how they have been helped by the Shriners. It was likely the most humbling experience I have gone through to date. Seeing how some of those kids are thrilled just to walk again really puts into perspective how little of an issue it was for me to have a bad 40-yard dash time.
EKS: What are some of your favorite memories you can share from the Shrine Bowl and it’s activities?
AA: I would have to say my favorite memory was the day with the hospital patients that I mentioned above. On top of that, we the players had a lot of good times just hanging out and getting to know each other.
EKS: Do you stay active in Shriners to this day? If so, how?
AA: Unfortunately I am not currently active in the Shriners. However, when football and school have come to an end for me, I plan on becoming more active, as I believe what the organization stands for is an all-around great cause.
EKS: Your brother is competing in this year’s Shrine Bowl, what was your advice to him?
AA: I told Adam to really focus on the big picture, not just the football game. I understand that you obviously go to play football and win the game, but for me by the time that I had left it was more than big hits and touchdowns. It was getting to be a part of something that is greater than yourself.
EKS: Anything you would like to add?
AA: I appreciate you picking me to answer some questions. If there is anything else I can do let me know!