MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — He’s the man to beat at next month’s state track and field meet. But as far as he’s concerned, the bigger competition is within his own family. With his 6-foot 7-inch, 270-pound frame, there aren’t many sports in which Max Otterdahl would have trouble succeeding.
But years ago, it was his mother, who decided her son needed a different kind of challenge.
“She put me in track. And I originally thought track was running. So I was at the middle school, 7th grade, and I learned really quickly I didn’t like running. But what I did like, was what my brother was doing, just over here, was throwing,” Otterdahl said.
That would be brothers Payton and Trevor, now both accomplished throwers at North Dakota State. It was that classic case of the little brother who wanted to be like his big brothers.
“That’s why I started to do it, because I saw how good my brother was getting, and I saw how successful he was and just looked really fun. And I kind of built up a passion for it over time,” Max said.
Since then, Max has grown into the best thrower in the state. Last season, he won the state title in the shot put and was seventh in the discus. And this season, only weeks after Payton broke the NCAA’s all-time record in the shot put, Max broke Rosemount’s school record– previously held by Payton– with one of the top marks in Minnesota history.
“He says I can have his high school records, but I can’t have his college ones. So, I take that as a challenge,” Max said.
Of course, he gives his brothers a lot of the credit for his development.
“A lot of it comes from them helping me. They teach me technique, they teach me the right mindset. They’re really great demonstrators in how to be good throwers and good leaders in general in the sport,” Max said. “Seeing my brothers be successful in that made me want to be successful too. And they showed me how, and it was good.”
So as he prepares to make a run at the shot put and discus state titles next month, he’s thankful for his big brothers. And also for a mother who knew best.
Published at Sat, 18 May 2019 03:37:33 +0000