Former Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers was named the future head football coach of St. Michael Catholic High School in Fairhope, Alabama, once he retires.
"It's a special day for me and my family, really," Rivers said in a news conference, his voice breaking. "I know I'm going to get a little emotional. I had two childhood dreams. One was to play in the NFL, and I've been able to do that now going into my 17th season, and I still love that. The other is to be a high school football coach as my dad did... How blessed am I to be able to live both of those out, one on the tail end and one in the beginning stages."
Anyone who has been around Philip Rivers knows that the three most essential things in his life are Faith, Family, and Football. He has a passion for all three.
Members of the media who talked to Rivers knew that for him, a special time in his life was being coached by his father, Steve, at Athens High School, which is on the other side of Alabama. Rivers would joke that he developed his strange sidearm throw because ever since he was a kid, he would throw the NFL size balls.
"My dad was my high school football coach, so I want to coach my boys, and I want to coach young boys down the road. So I do know what's next when my playing time's over, so we did talk about it a little bit," he said, according to AL.com.
"I think really where we settled in was: I still love to play. Certainly not coming off my best year, but in a year where I still know I can play at a high level, I did it in spurts. I just didn't do it consistently enough. And I love it and shoot, it was one of those deals where we said, 'Well, if there's nothing else out there, then that'll be our answer.' We kind of said, 'Whatever God wants, so if there's nothing out there, I don't want to just try to hang on to play. If nothing's out there, shoot, we'll start coaching.'"
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In the past, when Philip talked about what he wanted to do once he retired, it was always about coaching high school football because he wanted to coach his son, Gunner. He coached Gunner while the family still lived in San Diego. Gunner is a quarterback like his dad. He is now around 11 years old, so high school is right around the corner.
Rivers signed a one-year deal with the Indianapolis Colts after he and the Chargers decided to mutually part ways after 14 seasons under center. The Colts, on paper, look like a playoff team and could be now that they have number 17 under center.
The initial announcement was that the 38-year old quarterback would take over in 2021, but during the press conference, it didn't sound like a one and done with the Colts.
"I think it is a one year at a time deal," he said. "I've expressed publicly, and the Colts have said too they hope it's more than one year. But we take it one year at a time. I love playing. When that time does end, you will get the same passion and work ethic at this school and community that I've poured into my career."
Until Rivers is ready to take over the school’s Athletic Director, Paul Knapstein, will be the teams head coach.
Faith has always been significant for the Rivers family. When Thanksgiving or Christmas was nearing, Rivers would be asked by members of the media what he was thankful for, and he always mentioned in some way his faith, so it is no surprise he is going to coach at a Catholic high school.
"I've always tried to live this as a person, and I'll always try to live it in my career, but our program will be faith, family, and football," Rivers said. "It will be built on faith."