Fifth-year Bartlett ready to leave his mark


Sam Bartlett catches the ball against University of Chicago.

by Tanner Krueger, Sports Editor

Fifth-year senior wide receiver Sam Bartlett came back with one goal in mind; To leave his mark on the Simpson College campus and football team. 

Bartlett is one of the three fifth-year players on this year’s Simpson football team. He is a three-year letter winner from St. Louis, MO.

“I wanted to come back because I put four years of grinding and destroying my body towards proving my ability,” Bartlett said.  “I wanted to finish on my own terms.”

Simpson football has historically kept one or two fifth year student-athletes each year. Each player has their own reason why they came back including Bartlett, who came back because he felt he had unfinished business. 

Bartlett took over some of the strength and conditioning responsibilities of the team in the offseason. The team made huge leaps over the offseason. This is something Bartlett has a passion for, while studying the topic at Simpson. 

Another opportunity to prove what he is all about is exactly what Bartlett wanted. In the first game against Bethel University, he led the team in receptions and receiving yards. 

“Having a guy with that much game experience coming back is great to have as a coach,” offensive coordinator James Hoffman said. “Bartlett helps teach the young guys about the nuances of the offense and help them develop while he is here.” 

Getting student-athletes to come back for another year is good for programs to maintain their culture and that’s exactly what Bartlett did. He is leaving his mark step-by-step on Simpson College’s football program by helping in a variety of facets.

Bartlett had conversations with coaches and returning players on the team about if he would return. The final decision was ultimately his. 

“Bartlett is the epitome of Simpson football with what he brings every day. He brings competitive excellence, toughness, and selflessness to the team,” head football coach Matt Jeter said. 

The players voted him as a captain for the 2019 football season, which is a huge honor for him.

“Whenever you can get guys to come back for a fifth year it is a positive,” Jeter said. “Bartlett has been in the program since I have been here and has helped get the culture to where we want it to be.” 

Bartlett would like to continue his strength and conditioning career after he graduates. He has had different experiences working in the industry already and the first step he would take would be a graduate assistant position. Then, he would like to become a strength and conditioning coach one day. 

Bartlett and the Simpson football team will continue their season against the University of Dubuque Sept. 21 at Chalmers Field. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.