Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Final stop on collegiate carousel

John Reid III
Alec Ogden (1) hands off the ball to Warhawk running back Alijah Maherr-Parr (23, right) in UW-Whitewater’s week one matchup against John Carroll University.

Alec Ogden played his first college football game in almost three years as the starting quarterback for UW-Whitewater, Saturday, Sept. 2 against No. 19 John Carroll University. Prior to the Warhawks week one matchup, Ogden last suited up for a college football game in November 2020 as a backup wideout for Middle Tennessee State. 

It is an understatement to say that Ogden is dedicated to the sport of football when you look at the path that landed him as first string quarterback on the Warhawks 2023 depth chart. In his career Ogden has passed through three different programs in three different divisions. His career has been impeded by transfer rules, and COVID regulations, but he never rolled over. The adversity that hindered his journey helped him realize what it was all about.

“I just want to play,” Ogden said. “This is my last year, I don’t really have any huge personal goals, I just want to play football and win, and have fun.”

Throughout his journey Ogden has persevered and taken each obstacle in stride, not letting anything get between him and the game he loves. He was handed countless opportunities to humbly walk away from the game and hang it up, but that was never an option in his mind. Monona Grove High School head football coach Brandon Beckwith is familiar with Ogden’s tenacious mindset and was never shocked by his decision to do what he needed to get back onto the field.

“It would have been an easy out and Alec never takes the easy out,” Beckwith said. “If he is determined to do something he is going to do it. It speaks about his dedication, he truly loves the game of football and he has proved that.”

Despite his brief playing hiatus, Ogden didn’t skip a beat as he led the Warhawks to an impressive second half comeback in week one. He recorded 289 all-purpose yards and three total touchdowns, including a trick play saw him lined up as a wideout and taking a jet-sweep handoff 46 yards to the endzone. He also demonstrated his ability to perform in the clutch with a game-winning touchdown pass at the end of the fourth quarter.

This performance was no surprise to coach Beckwith, who mentored Ogden throughout his high school career, and has stayed in touch as an important figure through his college career. As a quarterback for Monona Grove High School, Ogden led the team to a state championship game his junior year, and according to coach Beckwith he always had the physical and mental tools to be a special athlete. 

“He is just a grinder,” Beckwith said. “He is a guy who would work all day long in the summer, working for his dad’s landscape company. Then he would come workout in our weight room everyday, just really trying to get his body ready to compete for a starting job. I wasn’t surprised at all when he was named the starter week one for Whitewater. He is the ultimate competitor.”

Ogden’s first stop after high school was Bemidji State, a Division II program in Minnesota. He decided to transfer after his first season and ended up taking the leap to Division I when he joined Middle Tennessee State.

Ogden was forced to sit out a year due to transfer rules, and eventually made it onto the field as both a running back and wide reciver the following season. Amidst COVID and a loss of the team’s offensive coordinator, he decided to make one final jump to Warhawk football.

Unfortunately a NCAA rule change shortly after he officially transferred barred him from competing in the 2022 season, but he was able to familiarize himself with the program as a student-coach. Now, after playing the waiting game, things are starting to pay off for Ogden as he is pleased with the opportunity to play for the Division III powerhouse.

“Winning here is great, winning is another huge reason to stay,” Ogden said. “I’ve been on bad college teams and average college teams and now I am on a really good college team. Winning will fix a lot of things that are wrong with a team.”

The Warhawks new on field addition at quarterback is the definition of a natural competitor, but that is only a drop in the bucket of the tools and benefits he can bring to the program. In addition to his determination he has shown an unmatched commitment to the game of football, and has seen several different levels of competition and programs that give him valuable insight and perspective on the game. Aside from his on field attributes, Ogden is a loyal teammate and after years of waiting he is ready to play and have fun. Warhawk football seems to be the perfect place for that.

“I’m just addicted to football,” Ogden said. “It is so fun to play, and it is so fun to be on a team. I haven’t been on a team like this in my college career. Everyone is connected and everyone enjoys being around each other. I try to tell the guys on the team, ‘you don’t really realize how good you have it here,’ because I have been at every level so I have seen it all, but this place is different. I am just excited to get out there and compete and have fun.”

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About the Contributor
Mikey Rottier
Mikey Rottier, Men's Sports Journalist

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