16 year-old Hungarian WR ready to pursue the American Dream

Budapest Wolves’ young receiver Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth has received a scholarship to attend and play football at Fork Union Military Academy (FUMA) located in Fork Union, Virginia, 

The list of European players who have played in the NFL is impressive and includes names such as Jay Ajayi, (Miami Dolphins, Philadelphia Eagles), Sebastian Vollmer (New England Patriots), Zoltán Meskó (New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals), and Jack Crawford (Oakland Raiders, Dallas Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons). Now, sixteen-year-old Hungarian receiver Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth is embarking on a journey which he hopes will take him on the same path to the top league in the world.

The young receiver, who also plays soccer at Vasas Kubala Academy in Budapest, earned a scholarship to FUMA after meeting a representative of the school in Budapest.  He is hoping he can follow in the footsteps of a former graduate of FUMA, New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas.

 

Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth archive

American Football International: Congratulations on getting the scholarship to FUMA. What does it mean for you and how did the opportunity come about?

Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth: Thank you! First of all, it is an honor for me to get a scholarship at FUMA.  Since 8th grade I wanted to study in the US. There was a university fair in Budapest, where a coach from FUMA noticed my physique and asked me, if I was interested in handing in my application to a Military Academy. We were talking for almost three hours and since that conversation we kept in touch. This institute had a great impact on me, since it gave a lot of great athletes to the US and has many good results in athletics.

AFI: How will this scholarship help you?

GFH: Not all secondary schools in the US offer a full scholarship. This will help me out financially. However, because of the coronavirus I am not able to hand in my application for a student visa. This situation really makes the sports life difficult in the States. Not to mention, moving out to America will also be postponed for me. With every single day passing, it is sure that I cannot move out until January or next summer.

Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth archive

AFI: How did you begin your career as a football player?

GFH: My father loves the NFL. He is the reason why I love football so much. A few years ago I started to think about playing as well, however, since I am soccer player the expectations are very high, and I had no time for football. Nevertheless, a year and a half ago I managed to attend a try-out organized by the Budapest Wolves, where I realized how much I love to play this game. The coaches noticed that too and hoped to see me back at the practices. And they did.

AFI: As you mentioned, you are also a soccer player. Is it difficult to play the two sports at the same time?

GFH: It was not easy at the beginning since both seasons start in autumn. Luckily, the practices do not overlap each other. I can easily get from soccer training to football. The question was whether I could take it or not. But I could. However, I still have 11 practices a week with conditioning included. In addition, the soccer games are on Saturdays, while the Wolves games are usually organized on Sundays. Even the coaches were supportive since my performance did not decline.

Gergő Fullajtár-Horváth archive

AFI: Who inspired and helped you the most to grow as a football player?

GFH: A lot of people helped me in getting better and better each day. The Wolves’ U19 starting QB and the senior team’s backup QB, Levente Tóth practiced with me a lot. However, Gábor Veszeli personally pushed me and trained with me privately as well. In addition, Bálint Tanos helped me improve my strength, speed and stamina. Not to mention, my good friend Bálint Kozma supported me in my career since I began football. He also plays football at Stirling University.

AFI: What do you want to achieve in the US?

GFH: I have some long and short distance goals. Later on, I would like to reach the NFL. However, I have to concentrate on the near future. First, make it to the team, play and grow stronger. Then reach the NCAA.

Laszlo Makranczi
László Makranczi is a radio reporter, announcer and American Football journalist in Hungary. He lives in Debrecen and works for the Hungarian American Football Federation. Studied at the University of Debrecen, got a master’s degree in American Studies and he also has another degree in sports journalism. Currently, he is the press manager of the local team Gladiators and supports the Seattle Seahawks.
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