DN: Now that you’ve been selected to the Badlands Bowl and the Shrine Bowl, how excited are you to put on the pads again?
TH: I’m very excited. After making the commitment of not playing college football, I was really excited to play in those two games. It’s kind of the last hurrah I guess. Not a lot of people from Wahpeton have gotten a chance to play in the Badlands Bowl. I know Cole Zarak, Dokk (Brian Dokken) has, but other than that not many other people, so I’m pretty excited about it. The Shrine Bowl’s a pretty big deal, too.
DN: Did you at one point consider playing college football?
TH: Yeah, I was going to, but it didn’t work out with the program I wanted to go into in college. There’s just so much time taken away from my family and stuff like that. I just wanted to focus on school more.
DN: Where were you considering?
TH: Bemidji I was considering going to and UND.
DN: Could you describe the experience from being the ball boy to a three-year starter?
TH: It’s kind of crazy, now because I’ve been on the sidelines since fifth grade. I’ve always had such a passion for Huskie football I guess. It was always the best. I loved it. Being on the sidelines is 100 times better than being in the stands. You get to know the coaches, the players and I got to experience a lot of things. I’ve known everybody since I started in fifth grade when my brother was a senior. That’s what drove me the most to love football, so that’s why I liked it.
DN: What was it like having to miss some games due to a concussion your senior year?
TH: That was really tough. I didn’t want to but the head stuff is bad. It hurt to sit on the sidelines and watch the teammates that I’ve been playing with since sixth grade. I wish I would’ve been out there on the field, but there’s nothing you can do. I got as many games as I could this year and I was glad I could.
DN: What made you decide to play hockey this year?
TH: Evan (McCall) was a big part, because he was one of the football coaches. I’ve always wanted to play, but my parents didn’t want me to get into something I didn’t like. They were afraid I wouldn’t like it, but I told them, “I’m a senior, I got one more year left and I won’t be able to do it any other time, so I’m going to play,” and I had a blast. I wish I would’ve been playing since I was a little kid. I played pond hockey with my brother and all of his friends when he was in high school so I just always liked it since then. I grew skills from that. Not as good as the other hockey players, but it helped me learn stuff. I knew all the kids from hockey growing up with them, so that helped.
DN: What was the excitement like getting back to the state golf meet?
TH: I’m really excited, especially since we’re on our home turf. I’ve played Bois de Sioux so many times that I know it like the back of my hand. I can’t be more excited. It’s my senior year, I’m ready to play, I’ve worked hard for it and I’m ready to qualify the whole team when the EDC Meet comes up.
What are some of your favorite memories from your time as a Wahpeton athlete?
TH: This is when I was younger, but when the Huskies went to the state title game in 2013. Being a ball boy for that, that’s every little kid’s dream. Being on the field when those guys are playing. The other one would be Devils Lake when we went into six overtimes. I’ll never forget that. That was insane. I’ve never had such a hard game in my life. Everything’s been a memory for me. I’m going to miss it all. Huskie athletics has done so much for me and kind of brought me out of a shell. Sports are a big thing in my life. I love them and I need to be doing something all the time.
DN: What are your plans for next year?
TH: I’m going to UND and I’m going to double-major in commercial aviation and unmanned air systems.
DN: Is that what your brother (Charlie Hermes) did, too?
TH: He did the commercial aviation. I’m going to do the drone side of it. I’m a little big to sit in a plane.