Teen with autism plays in school's football game - WNEM TV 5

Teen with autism plays in school's football game

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ST. LOUIS, MI (WNEM) -

One football player in the middle of the Mitten had the game of his life this past weekend.

"Craig has a group of brothers that play on the field on Friday nights in the fall that go to the weight room the rest of the season. They're brothers in the classroom. They're brothers outside the classroom," said Marcy Bissonnette, mother.

Her son Craig Lancaster has autism and he served as corner back for his high school's varsity football team's last game Friday night.

He is the team leader and the glue that holds the team together.

"When Craig was first diagnosed by a very prominent autism specialist at U of M, they said he would not be able to do and then they handed me basically a list of things. Craig has accomplished almost every single one of those things on those lists," Bissonnette said.

Craig, a junior, played corner back against two Montabella High School receivers.

"I had a couple of blocks, but I showed people even if you have autism you can still do it out there. I showed everybody out there," Craig said.

His confidence and his attitude is what makes him who he is and his team who they are. The group of athletes have been taught the true meaning of friendship since meeting Craig in kindergarten.

"Our friendship is just like everyone else's in our grade. We all have a close friendship with each other like a brotherhood and we all embrace him like we embrace anyone else," said Dylan McCloskey, junior.

Like any other team they lean on each other, building a bed of support that has Craig planning his return to the field.

"I would like to play next year and play as many games as I can with my friends and show autistic people they can play football. That they can play sports," Craig said.

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