“Stories of Local Businesses” – Archive5789343102 02/8/2023
Author : David Allen : #658423 – X709 02/08/2023
A Comeback Kid
One of the true marks of a great athlete is the innate desire and will to win. That drive is something that cannot be taught and makes for a coachable athlete. This is especially true of one Dylan Karr. Karr is a fifteen-year-old attending Mira Costa High School in Manhattan Beach, California. He is a well-rounded athlete, highly competitive in football and basketball, with a bright future and prospects on the horizon, when a freak accident, which broke his spine, brought everything to a screeching halt. This pause would only prove temporary for an athlete who is willing to overcome adversity, has done so in the past, and come back even better.
Varsity football and basketball coaches alike have begun following Karr, tabbing him as a potential recruit for 2023 and it is not hard to see why. He has set records and been an integral part of any team for which he’s played. As a quarterback, Karr is the whole package. Not only can he throw with astounding accuracy, but also has the speed to round him out as a player. Karr can be placed in any position on the field and perform, whether it be as a quarterback, tight end, middle-linebacker, or safety. Before aging out of the combine, Karr placed third overall in his league three straight years in a row. He also broke a record for most picks, a skill that translates easily into basketball as well. His sport IQ and ability to learn plays makes him any coach’s dream.
Though he excels in both, Karr tends to favor basketball due to the speed of the game in addition to the constant change of play. However, this is also the sport in which Karr has received not one but two freak accidents. He was part of the starting five for his team in AAU Gold, the highest level of AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) basketball, and won the California State Title as well as the National Title. He became co-captain and his team proved to be merciless and undefeated, sweeping every team along the way including one coached by Danielle Barnes, sister of retired NBA player Matt Barnes. The first accident was years before when a frustrated opponent pushed Dylan laterally during a scrimmage. Karr reached out in the fall and shattered his elbow with a gnarly compound fracture that would require two pins. More recently, it was a shocking fluke that occurred after a simple layup that left Dylan Karr unable to continue on in the game, despite trying anyway.
He missed the layup then went up for his own rebound, as did his opponent. Karr went down and the opposing player came down on top of him, his elbow connecting and breaking Karr’s L4 in his spine, one of the lowest vertebrae. He recovered the ball and tried to dribble down the court before just… stopping. Dylan looked at his father, looked at his coach, and said that he could not continue. He tried to walk it off and realized that shaking off the injury would not be enough here. Fortunately, the question of whether Karr would be able to play again was soothed quickly by a confident orthopedic surgeon who assured the family of a full recovery. Now, in the midst of the pandemic, Dylan is about 95% of the way back to full health but having to continue physical therapy as well as two-hour Zoom practices from an endurance coach from home.
Dylan Karr excels on the field, court, and in school while maintaining a humble attitude. He manages his time with schoolwork as well as using the time at home to study videos of basketball and football players he admires, studying plays, strengths, and weaknesses. One such player that Dylan looks up to is Josh Rosen, quarterback for the Miami Dolphins. As coincidence would have it, Rosen came out of the same league and the same tennis club as our Dylan Karr. Dylan had the opportunity to even transfer and play at the same high school as Rosen (St. John Bosco) but opted to stay at Mira Costa. A true athlete can pick up any sport and be decent at it, and although Rosen was a youth star in tennis, Dylan Karr plays it for fun, using it as a tool in footwork that can transfer into his other sports. In addition to tennis, Dylan was competitive in Jiu Jitsu for 5-6 years, placing silver at Nationals for three of those years.
Despite being in two physically aggressive sports like football and Jiu Jitsu, it is ironic basketball is where he received the worst of injuries. Most would assume that after a spinal injury, a young athlete would be gun-shy to get back on the court. After his elbow injury, this was the case and it took Karr months before he got back to his normal level of aggression. Older now, he has learned the lesson that if you play scared to get hurt, it is harder to enjoy and love the game. He is preparing for the moment that he can step back onto the field and court in hopes that one day he might attend UCLA on a scholarship, the same college his father attended. Dylan has grown up looking up to players like Kobe Bryant, Josh Rosen, and Kawhi Leonard… athletes that inspired him to love and excel in sports. Dylan’s motto has always been: “I want to be the best, so as to inspire others to be their best.”
Author : David Allen : #658423 – X709