One of the biggest blows to the Indianapolis Colts franchise during the Peyton Manning era was when stalwart left tackle Tarik Glenn retired from football following the Colts Super Bowl victory in 2006/07. It came as a shock to much of the fan base who simply wanted to build on the team’s playoff run and maintain momentum heading into 2007.
At 31 years old, Glenn wasn’t necessarily a young man in professional football years but since his retirement Indianapolis has not found a player to match his talent at left tackle. It would have been ideal for him to return for a couple of more seasons to help keep Manning’s blind side protected but Glenn had bigger plans.
Speaking with the IndyStar’s Clifton Brown, Glenn explained that he didn’t want football to dominate his life or his image.
Since his retirement, Glenn has put together a nonprofit organization based in Indianapolis called Dream Alive, which focuses on helping at-risk students from 7th grade through high school. Their work helps connect these students with internships, field trips, and mentoring that they might not otherwise experience.
“Dream Alive was our way to give back to Indianapolis, motivated by what Indianapolis gave to us.”
While he still considers Indianapolis a second home, he moved back to California and joined his alma mater, University of California, as the assistant director of student-athlete development. Needless to say, this role also allows him to have an impact in the lives of young people and try to pass along his experience and guidance to help them achieve their dreams.
“You get so much favor, so much attention for sports in our society. It’s harder to get a kid’s attention when you say, ‘Why don’t you become a scientist?' Not a lot of cool points come along with that. I’m trying to motivate our kids to be well-rounded, letting them know there are other identities they can embrace.”
While it was tough for the Colts franchise to lose such a huge contributor to its success during Peyton Manning’s prime, it is awesome to know that a man like Tarik Glenn is a key figure in the fabric of the Colts franchise in Indianapolis. At-risk youth in Indianapolis and student-athletes in California are reaping the benefits and it is hard to ask for more than that.