AUSTIN, Texas (KWTX) Football runs in the Hager family. Britt Hager is the all-time leading tackler in University of Texas football history with 499 tackles. His first and third son Bron and Brevyn played college football at North Texas and Blinn respectively. His youngest son, Breckyn just finished his career as an All Big 12 defensive end for the Longhorns.
Britt's second son, Bryce Hager, was an All American and three time All Big 12 performer for Baylor finishing as one of the all-time leading tacklers in school history.
“He knocked on our door at night and he came in and said ‘I’m going to Baylor’, and I said the good news is you’re going to get to play in the Big 12, the bad news is you won’t get to go to a bowl,” joked Britt. “He ended up going to five bowl games and winning two Big 12 championships. So what do I know?”
Bryce was a part of some of the best teams in Baylor history. Even though Bryce was one of the most consistent performers in the Big 12 during his time, it took until the 7th round for him to be drafted by the then St. Louis Rams in 2015, the team Britt just so happened to finish his career for.
“As a family where, you know, football is a big part of our life, we know how hard it is to get to that point,” said Britt. “And how much sacrifice it took. And how much he really wanted it. And so to see that made us very very happy and it was a great day.”
Britt played for some great Eagles and Broncos teams during the 1990’s, but despite playing with Hall of Fame talents like Reggie White and John Elway, Britt’s teams were never able to make it to the Super Bowl. An accomplishment that his son will have on his resume come Sunday.
“It’s incredibly satisfying because you know how hard it is, playing it and going through it, you know how hard it is to get to it and never having the opportunity,” said Britt. “And then seeing your son do it, you always want to see your children do a lot more than I ever did. As a father I want to see them so better and do bigger things. And to see him get to be a part of this and as a family get to be a part of it, it’s incredible. It’s incredibly exciting.”
With all of the excitement and nervousness surrounding the Super Bowl it’s nice to have people to lean on. It’s especially nice to have parents of players who have played in the Super Bowl that just happen live in your community.
“Westlake here in Austin…you had Drew Brees that won the Super Bowl MVP,” said Britt. “You had Justin Tucker the kicker from the Ravens. Last year Nick Foles won the Super Bowl MVP. Now Bryce is there so we’ve had four Westlake young men from the football program play in the Super Bowl from our community we are really excited about that as well.
Hager says Larry Foles, father of Nick, has helped calm his nerves this past week.
"I just asked how did you handle the week,” said Britt. “I get excited anyway. I get emotional anyway. But I think this week I’m just trying to stay calm and enjoy the moment because it’s so hard to get here I just want to enjoy the moment and everything we go through and all the things we are going to do when we get there.”