Whether chasing ball-carriers at one end of the field or punting footballs down to the other, Windsor Forest High School's Alex Bryant Jr. never had any doubts about who was on the side of the field.
"It was like a guaranteed thing,'' said the Windsor senior. "All my teammates, they'd be like, Alex, I know your dad's going to be at this game. And I'd be like, yep, he's already here.''
If Alex Jr. is playing, Alex Sr. is watching, traveling the roughly 500 miles roundtrip to be at his son's games.
"About 12 years I've been commuting from Atlanta to Savannah every week,'' said Alex Sr. "Since Alex was five, I might have missed four games in 12 years. He's my only child and I just want to be a great dad.''
In the last two years, Alex Sr.'s role has changed from fan to facilitator, helping Alex Jr. manage, survive and succeed at the college football recruiting process.
He has made highlight tapes, sent them to coaches and followed up with hundreds of phone calls.
"My thing,'' says Alex Sr., "was two things. I told him, you take care of it in the classroom first and on the football field second and leave it up to your parents to take care of the recruiting process. And that's what we've done.''
It's a degree of support not all players signing letters of intent Wednesday have behind them.
Some will get to the next level on talent alone. But a lot of others who could play in college, won't make it there because they don't have what Alex Jr. knows he is lucky to have.
"I'm very fortunate honestly. I really am,'' says Alex Jr. "Because some people, they don't even have a father coming to their games, parents coming to theirs games. That really motivates me when I see my mom, my dad, my stepdad.''
Alex Jr. plans to reward that encouragement, not tomorrow when he signs to play college football, but by living his life through the lessons that support has taught him.
"When you grow up, you take care of your family,'' he said. "You do whatever you can for them because they raised you for 18 years. So you've got to give it back some way.''