THE GRIND: Horizon Christian's Alex Dahlberg
On Monday, Alex Dahlberg is a football player, standing on Horizon Christian Academy’s new home field in his jersey, cleats and helmet, running routes and snaring passes. That’s just a small part of Dahlberg’s identity, though.
He’s an avid guitarist who likes music just as much as sports, and he’s looking at Belmont University in Nashville, with its prestigious music business program, as a possible college destination.And he’s a football player right now, one whose speed makes him a vital piece for Horizon as a receiver and defensive back, but he’s also a state champion basketball player and one of the best track and field athletes in the county.
Dahlberg lives close by Lambert High School, and he went there as a freshman in high school. Basketball was Dahlberg’s primary sport growing up, with his AAU team giving him a year-round commitment, and that was what he focused on during his time with the Longhorns.
Horizon piqued Dahlberg’s interest when he heard about it on the news, though, and visited the campus. He saw plenty of opportunity, whether it was to star on the school’s football and basketball teams or to stack college credits through the school’s dual enrollment program.
“I actually have more college credits than my brother, who’s a sophomore in college right now,” Dahlberg said.
Dahlberg quickly saw success on the basketball court, slotting in guard for the Warriors. He led them to a Georgia Independent Christian Athletic Association state championship in 2016 and another in 2017, dropping 20 points against Alleluia Christian to help lead the Warriors to this year’s title.
It wasn’t until Dahlberg’s second year at Horizon that he joined the Warriors football team, and that was as much due to the coaches insistence as his own ambition. Horizon needs as many players as it can get, playing in the GICAA’s 11-man division with a roster size in the low to mid-20s.
Dahlberg doesn’t think he would be playing football if he was still at Lambert, but with the Warriors, he almost never leaves the field, playing offense, defense and special teams.
“It’s kind of brutal playing every snap of the football game,” Dahlberg said. “…It’s really intimidating.”
He loves the opportunities to play and star in multiple sports at Horizon, though, and Dahlberg’s newest pursuit might be the one that makes him a college athlete. He’s long known that speed was one of his best assets, and this past spring, he decided to do track and field for the first time.
There was a small issue to overcome, though: Horizon doesn’t have a track, or a track team. Dahlberg has to practice at Lambert, and while he sometimes could train with classmate Leon He, Dahlberg was often going at it alone, using YouTube videos to get tips on workouts and form.
“You’re your own coach here,” Dahlberg said.
That arrangement is working out well enough, though. Dahlberg finished second at the GICAA state championship in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.56, and he got third in the long jump with a mark of 20 feet, 4 inches, which was more than a foot better than his first attempt of the year. If he keeps up that rate of improvement, he sees a definite path to competing in college, wherever that may be.
“Whether it’s D-III or D-I, I just want to do it,” Dahlberg said.