2019 Lejeune graduate uses his Devil Pup mentality to make it as a college football player.

If it wasn’t for Lejeune High School, 2019 graduate Matt Peterman said he probably wouldn’t have even made it through football camp at Alma College in Michigan.

“It was an eye opener understanding what it takes to be an actual college athlete,” Peterman said. “Lejeune definitely prepared me with my mentality. Since we were a smaller school we always had to fight, so when I got up to college I just had to remember where I came from and how hard I fought to get there.”

Peterman played special teams and receiver on the junior varsity team for Alma in what he called a humbling first year.

“It’s a learning curve,” Peterman said of the dedication it takes to be a student-athlete in college. “It’s all about football and academics.”

Heading into his sophomore season, Peterman is shooting for a spot on the varsity special teams unit while vying for time on the field amongst Alma’s talented receiving group.

His advice for future college athletes?

“Don’t think you’re the best. You really got to have the mental strength and the tenacity to be able to fight for your spot,” Peterman said. “To be the best you have to be willing to put the work in.”

Peterman, who calls Camp Lejeune home, made the Dean’s List and is majoring in special education.