HS football 2021: Union Titans

Tobias Merriweather, who expects to sign with Notre Dame, is a prime example of student-athlete, a star performer in the classroom and on the football field at Union High School.

Tobias Merriweather is more than a great football player, he is also a standout student

The drive to succeed has been with Tobias Merriweather for years.

Not just on the football field.

Sure, today, he is known as a spectacular athlete, one of the best wide receiver recruits in the country, a 6-foot-4 speedster who has announced his intention to sign with the University of Notre Dame.

Yes, Tobias Merriweather is a football player. That is what has made him a “name” to the sports world.

But to him and his family, it is more important that he made a name for himself in the classroom.

“For me, I like to compete in everything I do,” Merriweather said. “Every day I come home and I reflect: ‘Did I do 100 percent that day?’ I like to think the answer is yes most days.”

Tobias Merriweather, at 6-foot-4 and with tremendous speed, is one of the top wide receiver recruits in the country. A senior at Union, Merriweather expects to sign with Notre Dame. Photo by Paul Valencia
Tobias Merriweather, at 6-foot-4 and with tremendous speed, is one of the top wide receiver recruits in the country. A senior at Union, Merriweather expects to sign with Notre Dame. Photo by Paul Valencia

Again, for many athletes, that attitude could be from time on the practice field.

Merriweather was talking about his studies.

“Even back in the day, I used to race to see who could do the math test first or who would finish with the highest score,” Merriweather said. “Just bring that attitude to wherever you are and have fun with it. There is no reason to go to school and not do anything for six hours.”

Early in his academic career, his parents pushed him, told him to do his best. 

“They were always on me, but they realized they didn’t need to be on me,” Merriweather said. “I’m my biggest critic.”

While his future is bright, the focus for Tobias Merriweather is on right now, this season with the Union Titans. Photo by Paul Valencia
While his future is bright, the focus for Tobias Merriweather is on right now, this season with the Union Titans. Photo by Paul Valencia

Now heading into his senior year at Union High School, we already know Merriweather is going to Notre Dame, one of the most famous football programs in the country and a renowned academic institution. It is also important to note that Merriweather also visited Stanford, one of the most difficult colleges to be accepted.

“It was just an all-around good experience,” Merriweather said of his visit with the Cardinal. “Just to know that it’s a place that was wanting me and not just because of football but because I’m a good enough student. It was a proud moment for myself and my parents.”

Merriweather could have gone anywhere he wanted, to study, to play football.

That is such a victory, not only for him, but for the Union football program, coach Rory Rosenbach said.

“We talk to our kids about it from the time they are freshmen, how important it is to start your academic career fast,” Rosenbach said. “We talk about keeping as many doors open as possible. When your best players are also taking AP classes and have GPAs in the 3.5-plus range, it means a lot from a program standpoint, and it means a lot to young kids. When they see that, they see that’s the expectation.”

Merriweather’s GPA is around 3.9. And with his athletic ability and potential, yes, he could have gone anywhere. He picked Notre Dame.

“I can’t come up with a better answer than, ‘Why not?’ It’s a top-10 football program year after year. A top-10 academic program year after year. Why not? There’s no better place for me.”

Tobias Merriweather of Union loves football but does not need football to go to college. Yes, he plans to sign with Notre Dame to play the game, but he is an academic standout on his own, as well. Photo by Paul Valencia
Tobias Merriweather of Union loves football but does not need football to go to college. Yes, he plans to sign with Notre Dame to play the game, but he is an academic standout on his own, as well. Photo by Paul Valencia

Merriweather’s future is a big topic of discussion. Meriweather, though, is ready for the first game of his senior season so the focus can return to the Union Titans.

“Everyone’s talking about what happens next in my life, but I’m really focusing on what’s happening right now,” he said. 

He wants to reach new heights not just on the scoreboard but with the way people remember him. He wants to be the next Lincoln Victor, who led Union to a state title in 2018, when Merriweather was a freshman.

“When you think of Union football, you think Lincoln Victor,” Merrieweather said.

A great leader. Did the right thing even when no one was looking. Wants everyone else to be great. And makes plays. That was Lincoln Victor. Tobias Merriweather wants to be just like him.

Including that state championship part.

“I think we have a good chance of that right now. We have a lot of senior leaders on this team,” Merriweather said. “We know what it takes. We’re working toward that every day.”

Tobias Merriweather, who expects to sign with Notre Dame, is a prime example of student-athlete, a star performer in the classroom and on the football field at Union High School.
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