Football player Medrano finds college through social media
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera Coyotes football and basketball player Raul Medrano III sits with his parents Maria and Raul Jr. during a signing ceremony at Madera High School where his signed a letter of intent to Luther College.
Madera Coyotes football player Raul Medrano III used social media to his advantage and found his next place to play.
Through Twitter, Luther College in Iowa found Medrano and he signed a National Letter of Intent to play football at the school.
“They found me,” Medrano said. “I posted my highlights on Twitter and their offensive coordinator reached out to me. It was weird getting a message from them because they are so far away.”
At first, Medrano wasn’t too sure about going to Iowa to play football. It wasn’t about being away from home or if he was capable of playing at that level.
“My first thought was it gets really cold over there,” he said. “ When I went to go visit last January, the visit went extremely well. I liked the culture there. It was like negative 2 degrees.”
In addition to Luther College, Medrano also received interest from Pacific University in Oregon.
However, before he went on his official visit, Medrano received an offer from Luther College. After deliberating, he accepted the offer in February.
“It felt good to get this done,” he said. “I thought I would have to go the City route. Luckily, the coaches liked me enough and I was good enough to play for them.”
Normally, Medrano would have signed in November when his football season was nearing an end or finished and he would be getting ready for basketball season.
However, this year wasn’t the typical year. When Medrano signed his NLI, he still wasn’t sure he was going to have a football season. Then, he received word they were going to have a season and got in seven games.
“It was a lot better to sign and have a football season,” he said. “I thought that if I balled out my senior year, other colleges would look at me. It felt good because I knew where I was going. That was great not having to go through two-a-days in the summer.”
Medrano graduated with a 3.3 grade point average and plans to major in ag science.
“My family is a bunch a farmers and do chemical work in the field,” he said. “I was always interested in that and I plan on doing the same thing.”
Medrano said the Luther coaches plan to utilize him everywhere.
“They want me on the outside, the slot, on special teams.,” he said. “
This year, Medrano went from having football practice in the afternoon and then hustling to the gym to either get in a basketball practice or play in a game.
“It was fun to do both sports at the same time,” he said. “I have a lot of my closest friends on the basketball team and I got to hang out with them more than when we were in quarantine. Sometimes, it was tiring after a long football practice, but I never let it bother me. I was more happy to have the football season.”
Medrano did have a Plan C — play baseball if the football season wasn’t played.
“I have friends on the baseball team,” he said.
Medrano’s parents weren’t too happy about him going halfway across the country though.
“My family thought it was really far, but they supported me,” he said. “The first question people ask me about where I’m going is, ‘Where’s that.’ When I say Iowa, they say that’s cold.”
Medrano was able to celebrate his signing at a school-wide signing ceremony with about seven other Madera Coyote seniors who signed an NLI to play at a four-year university next year.
“It’s really cool to know where I was going,” Medrano said. “I’ve been dreaming about this since I was a little kid. I saw my friends do this when I was a sophomore. They were really excited about it. It was really special. It was really cool to have the signing ceremony.”