Genz’s 353rd career tackle broke the Tech record for most career tackles—a record previously set in 1993 by Mike Gurul when Genz was one-year-old.
Genz’s story starts just a little bit after that, as he’s been playing football since the sixth grade. He played every sport and was fascinated with baseball, but Tech offered him the chance to play college football instead.
“Once Tech made an offer to me, I was all in,” he said.
Right out of the gate Genz was behind the eight ball, tearing his knee during a fall scrimmage his freshman year. Shortly after having minor knee surgery, he broke his foot, requiring two pins to be inserted. Genz began to doubt his football career.
“At this point I’m thinking, ‘It’s not in the stars for me; I’m not cut out for this.’”
Thankfully for the Wonder Boys and their fans, he decided to stick it out, but the injuries didn’t stop there.
In his sophomore year, he tore a thumb ligament but managed to play the entire season until the final game, when he dislocated his shoulder. This led to his fourth surgery during his time as a Wonder Boy.
Genz’s family has always been his biggest motivator and support system. His family has attended every game of his career—home and away—and are always there to talk with him after the games. Genz’s older brother, Taylor, has played a very special role in his career.
“He’s always been bigger, stronger and faster,” he said. “Watching him play college ball really inspired me. He taught me that you have to love the game in its entirety. You have to love practicing, watching film, working out.”
Heading into this season, Genz knew he was tied with the record. It kept him “humbled through the offseason,” he said.
However, when he took to the field in the season opener, it fell to the back of his mind.
“Once I got to the sideline, they told me I got my tackle,” Genz said. “I completely forgot about it.”
Genz has spent his career as a team player.
“I never went into a game wanting to get so many tackles; I just wanted to help the team win,” he said. Genz shared a sentimental moment when discussing his record.
“It hasn’t sank in yet,” he said. “This is my fifth year here at Tech. I’ve played lots of football. It’s all added up to this one moment, to have my name in the record books. It shows the hard work I’ve put in for this sport and university.”
He also offered advice to not only football players, but anyone chasing a dream.
“Never give up. I know it sounds cliche, but never give up. Outwork everyone else and it’ll be possible.”
Genz’s story doesn’t end here.
The Wonder Boys are off to a hot 3-0 start for the first time since 2007. Genz said he believes the current team is something special.
“We’ve put in the work,” he said. “We have a true shot at winning a conference championship this season.”