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Community Champion: El Pasoan Greg Long finding success on Purdue football team

EL PASO, Texas -- Greg Long's football journey has had its share of ups and downs.

But through it all, Long continues to find success.

His latest pitstop is in West Lafayette, Indiana as part of the Purdue football team.

Long is starter at right tackle for the Boilermakers competing against the very best in the Big Ten Conference.

"I just always told myself that if I kept my head down and I kept working good things would come from it," Long said. "It's been a great experience so far, I've been enjoying the game."

After graduating from Eastwood High School in 2016, Long headed to UTEP where he was a starter on the offensive line as a true freshman.

His 4 seasons as a Miner was plagued by injuries, but Long always bounced back and played at a top level.

In December, Long decided to enter the transfer portal, and he was immediately picked up by Purdue.

Long was eligible to play right away as a graduate transfer.

Two games into the 2020 season, Purdue is 2-0.

Long says the level of competition in the Big Ten is a challenge, but it's nothing he can't handle.

"When we would play opponents in Conference USA we had certain players that we'd like to key on because they were of a higher caliber, and here at Purdue all 11 that we have to face are at a high caliber," Long said.

Long has had to overcome obstacles off the field as well.

He lost both his parents when he was in high school, but he credits his younger sister for keeping him going and motivated to succeed in life.

"I need my sister, she's my driving force," Long said. "It has meant so much to me to be on the path that I am on, and it's meant a lot to me and I hope that I can be a good role model for her."

Long is also certainly a role model to other El Paso athletes who have dreams of playing at the next level.

Long's advise is to always keep trying and never give up.

"If it sounds silly to other people it doesn't matter because it's your dream so pursue it." Long said.

Long has aspirations of playing in the NFL, so he'll have a decision to make at the end of this season.

Due to Covid-19, the NCAA is granting student athletes another year of eligibility.

Long is grateful to have that opportunity should he choose to stay at Purdue another year.

But for now Long had a message for his community back home.

"I love you guys, thank you so much for supporting me on my journey," Long said. "I hope to support all of you as well, and hopefully I can give something back to my community when the time is right."

For his accomplishments, Long has been named a Community Champion.

Community Champions is sponsored by Albertsons and the El Paso Community Foundation.

Borderland Blitz / Community Champions / Video

Adrian Ochoa

Adrian Ochoa is ABC-7’s Sports Director.


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