Charlie Wistrom, daughter of former Husker Grant Wistrom, making a name for herself on the football field
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – It might not be surprising to learn that one of most ferocious and accomplished defenders in Nebraska football history has a kid thriving in high school football this fall.
The surprise comes when you learn that Super Bowl champion Grant Wistrom’s child is earning praise as a kicker…and it’s his daughter.
Charlie Wistrom, the sophomore daughter of Grant and Melissa Wistrom, has had success as a soccer player at the club and high school levels.
But Mike Mauk, head coach at Glendale High School in Missouri, had a need for a kicker earlier this season.
“I don’t know where I was, but I got a text from my dad,” Charlie Wistrom said. “He was asking me, ‘How far can you kick a football?” I was like, ‘I have no idea.’ And he’s like, ‘Do you want to come find out? Coach Mauk is asking.’”
In her first game, Charlie Wistrom converted two onside kicks and a field. She has become a mainstay for the 5-2 Falcons.
Wistrom isn’t unfamiliar with success, having helped lead Glendale to the state championship round in soccer during the spring.
“In soccer I’m doing so much more,” Charlie Wistrom said. “I’m on the field for 90 minutes and I’m contributing the whole time. I think for football, I step on maybe five times a game. It’s different.”
One thing she didn’t have to get used to when stepping onto the football field was being compared to her father, who won three national championships for the Huskers and a Super Bowl with the St. Louis Rams after a standout high school career in Missouri.
“With soccer even, I play on a club up in St. Louis, and for state we’re up in St. Louis, and it’s like anytime I do anything, it’s Grant Wistrom’s daughter,” Charlie Wistrom said. “It’s always kind of been that way.”
Her dad said that while football has been a big part of his life for several years, his daughter’s success in the sport is about much more than that.
“The pride that I feel for Charlie and playing football is, you know, exposing herself, putting herself out there, being vulnerable, and stepping up and putting herself in a situation that most women would be intimidated by,” Grant Wistrom said. “Charlie stepped right up to the plate, took a cut, and hit it out of the park. It’s been awesome, for our relationship, for her own personal growth, and she’s been a darn good asset for her football team as well.”