Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

More Than a Game

Mom's in charge of keeping her football player fueled

When Cerbrenda Barbour's son gets home from football practice, the first words out of his mouth are often "I'm hungry."

Feeding her only son, Gary Brown, 17, can be a challenge. The 6-foot-3, 293-pound senior left tackle for Alonso High School has a big appetite, and keeping his hunger in check requires some planning and preparation.

On Tuesday afternoon, Barbour walks around Publix, adding food to her cart and checking things off her cellphone grocery list. Two salmon filets, 1 1/4 pounds of ground beef, three packages of breakfast sausage, and packages of sliced ham, chicken strips, chicken wings and bacon. Gary's favorite food is meat, but his mom balances that with other nutritious stuff, including green beans, mashed potatoes, collard greens, and apples. Broccoli is his favorite vegetable.

This week's grocery bill: $136.21.

Later that night, Barbour stands at the stove, seasoning ground beef and adding butter to a pot of mashed potatoes. She takes a quick trip to get Gary from practice. After arriving home, he takes out his contact lenses and puts his glasses on. They sit around the table together, mother and son, and say a prayer before a meal of meatloaf, mashed potatoes and broccoli. Gary has second helpings of meatloaf and potatoes.

"Gary eats more during football season because he needs it, because they just burn it off," his mom said. "He loves to eat meat, and he loves dessert. I curb his desserts quite a bit, but I let him eat as much meat, vegetables and carbs as he wants."

On Sept. 23, Gary committed to play football at Georgia Tech next fall and says he is not sure what he'll do for meals in college without his mother's home cooking.

"I might just be eating six packets of ramen noodles each day," Gary said.

Do you have an idea that you would like to see featured in "More Than a Game"? Eve Edelheit can be reached at eedelheit@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3309.

Each week this fall, Times photographer Eve Edelheit will scan the county to focus on the ancillary aspects — players, drama, coaches, fans, highs, lows, tradition, cheerleaders — that make prep football in this area "More Than a Game."

Each week this fall, Times photographer Eve Edelheit will scan the county to focus on the ancillary aspects — players, drama, coaches, fans, highs, lows, tradition, cheerleaders — that make prep football in this area "More Than a Game."

Mom's in charge of keeping her football player fueled 10/02/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 2, 2013 2:16pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Family a driving force for University of Tampa pitcher David Lebron

    College

    TAMPA — For University of Tampa junior pitcher David Lebron, baseball reminds him of family. He uses it to help honor the memory of his father, who taught him the game. One day, he hopes his career can help support his mother and allow her to rest.

    University of Tampa junior pitcher David Lebron (Courtesy of University of Tampa)
  2. L.A. delay could re-open Super Bowl chance for Tampa in 2021

    Blogs

    Construction delays on the NFL's new stadium in Los Angeles mean the Rams and Chargers won't be playing there until 2020, a year later than expected, and the ripple effect could give Tampa another chance at landing a Super Bowl in February 2021.

    Tampa and Raymond James Stadium last hosted a Super Bowl in 2009, when the Pittsburgh Steelers edged the Arizona Cardinals.
  3. Bucs' Gerald McCoy, Jameis Winston honored in NFL top 100

    Blogs

    Helping fans pass time through the offseason each summer, NFL Network has been unveiling its top 100 players for 2017 as chosen by the players, and the Bucs' Gerald McCoy and Jameis Winston are the first Tampa Bay players revealed, coming in at No. 52 and 57, respectively.

    Bucs quarterback Jameis WInston and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, shown in the 2016 season finale against the Panthers, have both been named to the NFL Network's top 100 players for 2017.
  4. The play occurred in the third inning when Angels rookie Nolan Fontana, making his major league debut, tried to slide past the tag of Rays second baseman Michael Martinez.
  5. Former Gator Caleb Brantley paying a steep price for nothing

    Bucs

    It turns out Caleb Brantley isn't quite the dirtbag that millions of people presumed. It's too bad the damage to his reputation and bank account is already done.

    Caleb Brantley, who dropped to the sixth round of the draft, works out during Browns rookie minicamp. [Associated Press]