Generally speaking, if there is a Jacksonville Indian sports team playing, Keyuta “Ke Ke” Fuller is usually pretty close by.
Fuller, a senior, is the school's veteran student athletic trainer who serves just about all of the Tribe sports.
“I help with as many sports as I can,” Fuller said as he steadily filled plastic water bottles during an Indian football practice late last month at Happy Valley. “If a coach needs me to be there, then I am there.”
While providing refreshments to thirsty players may be the most viable part of Fuller's job, it is far from his only responsibility.
“I do a lot more than just bring water,” he said. “I do some taping and I help (Jacksonville head athletic trainer) Jason (Kraus) treat the players when they are injured and I do whatever he needs me to do, depending on the situation.”
Kraus spoke highly of Fuller's contribution to the athletic program at Jacksonville High School.
“Ke-Ke is a hard worker who puts in a lot of hours in helping the athletes and coaches here at Jacksonville,” Kraus said.
Kraus went on to add, that in his opinion, Fuller's mark on the program is the amount of respect that he commands.
“Our coaches here have a lot of respect for Ke Ke and the job that he does,” Kraus added. “And I really think that that exemplifies how well he is thought of here.”
As for the most rewarding part of his job, Fuller didn't hesitate with his answer.
“I just want to see that everybody is healthy and is strong as they can be so that they can play to the best of their ability,” he said.
As for his favorite Jacksonville athletic memory, it is one that took place on Oct. 29, 2010 and is shared by numerous Indian football fans.
“When we beat Nacogdoches, 84-81, in 12 overtimes in football....I will never forget that game,” Fuller said.
Fuller said that he is especially thankful to have been able to work along side Kraus,who he considers to be an. ace mentor.
“Jason (Kraus) is a great athletic trainer,” Fuller said. “I've really learned everything I know from him.”
Fuller, who first began athletic training at the urging of a coach at Jacksonville Middle School about seven years ago, said.
After graduation in the spring Fuller hopes to be able to attend college and continue working in athletic training and as a backup plan he is considering joining the military.