Carmel Solomon Williams talks about faith


CARMEL – It might not be considered the ‘cool’ thing as a teenager to talk about your faith or wear that part of your life on your sleeve.

For Solomon Williams, his faith is as much a part of who he is as a football player or as a successful senior at Carmel High School (he has a 4.3 GPA and scored a 32 on his ACT ). On Wednesday, after training, he and his senior teammate Zach Osborne recruit others to join them for a Bible study and discussions that may or may not focus on religion depending on the day.

Whether that is seen as “cool” doesn’t really matter much to Williams.

“I’m pretty comfortable with who I am,” he said. “I know that if you have respect for people, they will respect every aspect of you. I mean it might be a cool thing, but I think there is something to be said about keeping that order and that commitment to something in your life.

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Williams, a 6-foot, 190-pound safety, is a leader on and off the field for fourth-in-class 6A (5-1) Carmel with 34 tackles and a fumble recovered. It’s a role he takes seriously. But Solomon is the first to admit that he received a lot of advice from his family members to shape his perspective on faith, leadership, and sport.

His brother, Christian, is a 2019 Carmel graduate who played a key role in Carmel’s Class 6A State Championship team as a senior, moving from quarterback to wide receiver following injury. sophomore Osborne. Christian, now in his sophomore year with the Michigan State Baseball team, said he had a close relationship with Solomon, even from a long distance, through “text, Snapchat or voicemail.” These messages can be as innocuous as sharing a new song or just asking how it’s going.

But their discussions often drift into their faith, which is a comfortable place for both of them.

“High school can be tough,” Christian said. “You can try to find your identity in sports and in school, but finding your identity in Christ helps you get through that because you don’t have to seek to please others – you seek to please God, who is immutable. I know it really helped me in high school and I think it helps Solomon. It also helps me at university. It strengthens our relationship with each other because we have that in common.

It starts at home. Christian, Solomon and their younger brother Nathan, a freshman at Carmel, are the sons of Colts assistant coach Alan Williams and his wife Lisa. Solomon grew up attending Detroit Lions practice on Fridays when his father coached defensive backs there from 2014 to 2017. But he was born in Indiana after his father joined Tony Dungy in the Colts team in as a defensive back coach in 2002 and remained until the 2011 season.

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The family moved to Minnesota when Alan was the Vikings’ defensive coordinator in 2012-13, then to Detroit for four years. But in 2018, ahead of Solomon’s first year at Carmel, Alan Williams was rehired with the Colts as a defensive backs and safety coach.

“I don’t talk a lot about (my dad who coaches the Colts) but it gets spread by word of mouth and especially in the football team that people know quite well,” Solomon said. “During the COVID-free years, I’ve been around the team a bit. It was a cool experience to get to know these guys and see how an organization works from the inside out. Luckily we didn’t have to. move around a lot (compared to other NFL coaches). I still have good friends in Michigan, but I’m glad we came back here. I have only good things to say about it and I am Glad I got to spend my high school years here.

One of Solomon’s favorite traditions combines family and faith – an annual trip to North Carolina for a Fellowship of Christian Athletes camp.

“It’s something that I really enjoy going with my brothers and my family,” Solomon said. “There are a lot of good athletes that I met there like (Auburn quarterback) Bo Nix and his younger brother, Caleb, and Marcel Reed, a four-star quarterback from Tennessee. There are a lot of great athletes, a lot of fun games and a lot of good times. This is something that I really appreciate. We have an FCA group here in Carmel that meets every Friday morning, so it’s great to connect with your peers on a topic you all care about.

Positive feedback at the right time and in the right place – on or off the pitch – can go a long way. Carmel coach John Hebert said he sees these “little things” of Solomon that are part of the bigger fabric of the team.

“He carries with him a lot of the wisdom that has accumulated in our program over the past three years,” Hebert said. “He clearly sees the big picture, but knows that our needs lie in our attention to detail every day. He’s the kind of guy who is always listening to someone – encouraging, coaching, challenging and supporting his teammates.

Osborne, a starter since his second year, shares many of the same beliefs as Solomon, including their faith. He said he noticed a difference in the vocal leadership of his senior teammate a year ago.

“He really opened his voice a lot more to help the younger ones,” Osborne said. “It takes a while, especially in this program. I remember when I was in second grade I kind of let my actions speak for themselves. Solomon doesn’t act like a big guy because his dad is an NFL coach or something, but I think we’re both better leaders now. Coming from a religious family, I think we try not to judge or put someone in perspective if we don’t know them. Instead, you try to get to know them and understand how we can relate to each other. “

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Solomon, like his older brother, also excelled in baseball. But he chose to focus on football and currently holds offers from Army, Campbell, Dayton, Memphis, Penn and Princeton. He has the interests of others, including Purdue. He plans to pursue a premedical path with the idea of ​​becoming an orthopedic surgeon.

Whatever path he chooses, Solomon said he will always be guided by his faith.

“That’s how I was brought up,” he says. “My brother has been a good role model for me in this area. He’s a really solid, uncompromising guy. I am grateful to have two parents who are deep enough in their faith and that will always be a big part of my life.

Call Star reporter Kyle Neddenriep at (317) 444-6649.

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