The game of football can be a uniting force.

It may not only create a strong brotherhood that brings a team together, but it can also a pair of brothers who are biologically related together and the game has done just that for senior Josh McCubbin and his sophomore brother Matt.

“It definitely builds a brotherhood between us and makes us push each other,” Josh said. “I think we’ve definitely gotten closer since we’ve played together.”

Being his senior season, Josh has been extra motivated to work hard in his final season on the gridiron with his brother and he has also taken some time to pass on what he has learned in his four years as an Indian. Since the two play similar positions on defense with Josh playing defensive end and Matt playing defensive tackle along the defensive line, those lessons have included a few pointers on how to get to the opposing quarterback or halt a runner in the backfield for a loss.

“I’ve been teaching him moves on how to get through the line, how to work harder and just give more effort,” Josh pointed out.

And it seems like those lessons have been starting to pay off. Josh has recorded 43 total tackles so far in 2017 with 13 of those tackles resulting in a loss and he has found a way to hunt down quarterbacks with 10 sacks. He has also forced a fumble and blocked a punt as well. Meanwhile, the young sophomore Matt has seen varsity snaps in just two games so far this year, but has already started to make his presence known with two total tackles and a tackle for a loss.

Any success they see on the gridiron doesn’t just happen by chance though as the two can get fairly competitive and push each other to get better in practice. Matt plays tight end on offense so with Josh lined up across from him at defensive end, it is a battle for family bragging rights.

“Whenever I block, I try to go as hard as I can and push him,” Matt said of their practices. “I know he is pushing me every time just because he is trying to get through and I think overall, it just makes both of us better and gets us ready for actual games.”

And naturally by being brothers, that fierce and fiery spirit may come out in the spirit of competition, but when it comes to game day it is all business for the McCubbins.

“Sometimes we’ll start pushing each other and talk a lot of stuff, but overall I feel like whenever it is Friday nights or Monday nights (junior varsity games) we get pretty strong and just keep making each other better.”

The McCubbins plan to keep it that way and help each other utilize the other’s full potential.