Editor’s note: This is the latest in a regular series of stories from 49ers Cal-Hi Sports that will highlight high school student-athletes across Northern California.
No one is hoping to play football more this season than Jurrion Dickey.
With high school sports still shut down, the Valley Christian wideout is spending his time working out with weights and at showcases wherever he can find one.
At a recent DB vs. WR camp in San Jose, Dickey showed how he has bulked up since his very impressive freshman season. A wideout in the mold of the 49ers’ Deebo Samuel, Dickey is big and strong with the ability to catch everything thrown his way.
Dickey has already received offers from a variety of Power-5 colleges, including Arizona State, Arkansas and Cal. He racked up 541 yards receiving with seven touchdowns in 2019 for a team that doesn’t throw all that much. Since then Dickey has added muscle and speed and looks to be a huge force for the Valley Christian Warriors if football is played this winter.
But Dickey has more than football on his mind.
His grandmother, Barbara Kindle, is battling stage 4 lung cancer. The family thought she had beaten the disease once, but it is now back and the struggle continues.
“The mass on my lungs is starting to shrink,” Kindle told us at a recent showcase. “I’m starting to get more energy. I’m starting to feel normal.”
Dickey and his grandmother live together and are extremely close. It’s been hard for him to see her go through this battle for the past four years. “I was heartbroken because a lot of people die from lung cancer and to lose my best friend, it would hurt,” said Dickey.
Dickey and his grandmother are two very different people. He is quiet and reserved. His grandmother is outgoing and energetic. She loves going to the games to cheer on her favorite player. You can hear her from the stands yelling and screaming her support at all of his games.
“She’s very loud, very loud, never quiet,” Dickey said as he gleamed with pride.
“She always expects me to do my best,” said Dickey. “She says if I don’t she’s going to beat me up when I get home.”
Dickey does all he can to keep his grandmother’s spirits up. “He’ll dance for me, he’ll sing to me, he even cooks!” Kindle said. “He might cook me something to eat, cook dinner for everybody. He’s always doing something.”
Dickey hopes football will be played this year so his grandmother can see him play with the Warriors once again. He realizes nothing is guaranteed so he cherishes every moment he can spend with his grandmother right now.
“Seeing him go to practice or to play a game is the highlight of my life,” Kindle said. “Even if I’m not feeling well it seems like it gives me that extra energy that I need to just see him play.”
Watch the 49ers Cal-Hi Sports feature on Dickey: