GOOD HOPE, Ala. — After earning the opportunity to start under center for the Good Hope Raiders in 2019, Tanner Malin put up huge numbers through the air and on the ground as he helped lead the Raiders to an 8-2 record and another trip to the postseason. Because of that performance, Malin has now earned another opportunity. The local standout received an invitation to compete in this year’ FBU Top Gun Showcase at the new Paradise Coast Sports Complex in Naples, Florida July 10-12. Malin can’t wait to get started at the Top Gun Showcase and is ready to learn a lot while he’s there.
“It’s very exciting really knowing they think I’m able to compete with some of the best players and I feel like it’ll be a great learning opportunity for me,” Malin said. “It’ll help out my passing game tremendously. The camp consists of certain throws, seven-on-seven competitions, one-on-ones, and a whole lot of competing.”
Tanner learned a lot from former Good Hope Quarterback Bailey Quick during his freshman season and he thinks that experience has really helped him get to where he is now.
“I learned a lot from Bailey,” Malin said. “He definitely brought me up under his wing my freshman season and showed me the ropes. Bailey is one of those players that he’s always going to do whatever the team needs to do to win. But I’d have to say the biggest thing I learned from Bailey is strive to always be a leader and show the young guys the way to go.”
Malin also got some advice from Cole and Drew Maddox that really helped him improve even more as a passer and a leader during his first season under center.
“The advice I’d say that they gave me is always teach others and be a leader instead of being a boss and bossing people around because you gain more respect teaching and leading people the right way rather than demanding them to do something when they can be taught.”
Malin has stepped up even more in a leadership role and his head coach, Alan Scott, has been one of the key reasons why.
“I believed I’ve stepped up to where everyone on the team knows if they need anything or question anything, I’m the guy to go to and anytime anyone wants to do extra work or for me to tell them a play, I’ll for sure be the guy to do it,” Malin said. “Coach Scott is honestly like another father figure in my life. He has taught me so many things on and off the field by keeping Jesus first and foremost. He also taught me to always go by his rules and repenting when wrong, to always stay close to family and making a brotherhood with your teammates. He makes sure everyone is taken care of and always reaches out to players and does everything in everyone’s best interest and what would benefit them the most.”
Tanner’s father, Blake Malin, has also had a big impact in Tanner’s development on and off the field. Being a former player himself, Blake taught his son everything he needed to know to become a great player and leader.
“My dad has taught me the ins and outs of the game of football and life,” Malin said. “He is my biggest supporter and my worst critic, but it’s because he loves me. He’s taught me to never be satisfied because there is work that can be done. He also taught me to always take charge and lead the way for everyone else while keeping God as the main focus.”
Another former teammate that Tanner has learned a lot from is Matt Hancock. Hancock tore his ACL his last two years of high school and despite not playing as much due to an injur, Hancock taught Malin a whole lot about how to handle yourself on and off the field and how to be a true leader.
“He showed leadership how it was supposed to be handled,” Malin said. “Whether injured or not, he was a true team player and wanted the best for the team even if he couldn’t be on the field with us. He showed me a lot of how I handle myself on the field and off, being a kind person and doing whatever I can for the community around me.”
When this season gets underway, Malin and the rest of his team will be aiming to repeat the success of the past two season starting with a season-opening road trip to on West Morgan August 20.
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