Utah football players are speaking out as part of a weeks-long effort to raise awareness about mental health and reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues.
As part of the mental health awareness effort announced by head coach Blake Anderson on Monday, testimonials from various Aggies have been and will be shared and promoted on social media over the next week and a half.
“We will welcome the fan base and the (Cache Valley) to join us as we promote mental health awareness,” Anderson said. “It’s something that our staff and our players have talked about a lot. It is that there is a passion inside our building.
“We’ll be running some stuff on our social media platforms, dropping feedback throughout the week, releasing resources, and as we get closer and closer to the games, we’ll be supporting anyone who might be watching, for anyone who might be dealing with mental health in your family, dark thoughts, depression and suicide.”
Here are the Utah player testimonials published so far. This story will be updated throughout the week as more Aggies speak out about mental health awareness.
The story of Utah Aggie player Stephen Cotsanley
The story of Utah longstop Jacob Garcia
The impact of Utah’s mental health awareness has already been felt among the Aggies themselves, with positive effects.
“It (mental health) is not something that’s talked about a lot in the football world,” offensive lineman Jacob South said. “We always only talk about football and there are a lot of guys who struggle with mental health
“It’s nice to have someone come in and talk to you and say you’re not alone in this, or that there are people who want to talk to you about it. Willing to listen. I’m so grateful that we’re having this week dedicated to this cause because it’s really important, especially for college athletes.”