North High starting season undefeated despite losing star quarterback to gun violence

The North High School football team is so far undefeated this season, with the team pulling motivation from their former quarterback.

Deshaun Hill was killed on February 9, after prosecutors say he brushed shoulders with Cody Fohrekam on a Minneapolis sidewalk. Fohrekam is charged with second-degree murder in Hill’s death, with his trial set to begin November 7.

Hill’s teammates say their friend wouldn’t want them to get too confident with a 4-0 record, so they’re taking the season as it comes. But, they say they continue to draw on his memory for motivation, and it seems to be working.

"When he passed this team said, ‘we have to pick it up and do it for him,’" said junior linebacker Kahlil Brown.

Head football coach Charles Adams III said Hill’s senseless killing has been hard on his players, but they’ve found healing in camaraderie.

"I tell the kids all the time that this is a safe haven for them - and we aim to make them feel safe - but also coming here is therapeutic for them," said Adams. 

Adams called Hill an "outstanding" kid, who exemplified positive leadership on the field. 

"He’s still with us obviously in our heart and he’s a major motivation," said Adams. "Physically he’s not here, but he’s never left us."