So many young people dream of a future in football.
While the NFL is achievable, it is not common. That’s why one Duncanville High School athlete’s backup plan is just as unique.
In a classroom filled with hot combs and curling irons, students are practicing everything from perms and spiral curls. There is a sea of future hair stylists in Duncanville High School’s Cosmetology Program.
In the middle of all of the action is one of the school’s standout football players. Quarterback Trazon Connley concentrates while highlighting a mannequin’s hair.
“My dad got me interested in cosmetology,” Connley said.
The football player said he has been learning to do hair for three years. The teen’s dad is a licensed barber.
“He was like cosmetology, it's a business…you can make money in there,” Connley explained.
Connley has been playing football since he was four years old. He admitted it’s not often one hears about a high school football player learning to do hair.
The student-athlete said cosmetology is part of his backup plan and gives him options for his future. He knows college scholarships and dreams of the NFL are not guaranteed.
"It's not really a promise that you are going to go to college,” Connley said. “It's not a promise that you are going to make it to the NFL. It's not a promise that you are not going to get injured."
Connley’s supportive classmates said he is as good in the Cosmetology Lab as he is on the football field. His teacher, Christy Smith, said his dedication is a plus, especially in a program where retaining male students, let alone male athletes, can be a challenge.
“It opens so many more doors. We're getting away from stereotyping and labeling what a specific career is supposed to look like, we are crossing all barriers with that, and he has become an ambassador and advocate of that at Duncanville,” Smith said.
Connley admitted he got a bit of a hard time from his teammates at first, but now some of the football players are asking him to style their hair.
The hair-styling quarterback said he is focused on his future.
"Try to be the best at everything,” Connley said. “I try to be the best at football. I mean, I come in here, I try to be the best at doing hair. I mean, it's really just to be the best in life.”