Thursday, April 2, 2015

Best Male Beater: David Gilbert

Over the past month, the Quidditch Post has been trying to answer the question: Who is the best quidditch player? Our judges and voters have narrowed it to six players, and we’d like to give our readers a chance to meet each of these elites. Today, we talked to David Gilbert of Baylor Quidditch, the best male beater.
Photo by Kevin Freeman

Quidditch Post: Congratulations on winning the best male beater bracket. It's certainly well deserved. What do you think has been the key to your success as a beater?
David: Thanks, Andy, I really appreciate it! I'd be lying if I didn’t say my teammates are the main reason for any sort of success I’ve had. For the first two years of my career, I practiced weekly against Tim Brestowski and Chris Rhodes, two of the most underrated beaters of Baylor's World Cup VI and VII teams. We basically beat the mess out of each other for two years, and as a result I learned a thing or two. Ive also always had Brittany Ripperger there since day one cleaning up my mistakes; beating gets a lot easier when she's on the field with you. I see my team as my familythey deserve my best from me, so it motivates me to play hard.

QP: You mentioned some of the outstanding beaters that Baylor has produced, but your team also plays a unique defensive system. How would you say the team's zone defense has impacted your role as a beater?
David: It's weird because that's the only thing I've ever really played, so its second nature. I've done plenty of man defense at fantasy tournaments and such, and I really don’t notice too much of a difference. I guess, if anything, zone puts a bit more pressure on beaters, which is great!

QP: How did you first get involved playing quidditch? What has kept you playing?
David: I came into Baylor torn between playing competitive rugby and paintball. The paintball team were jerks, and I wasn’t sure my body would survive rugby after seven years of football. I heard quidditch was full contact with just a little bit of nerd life; seemed like a perfect fit.

As far as what has kept me in the sport, it has definitely been the other people wearing Baylor on their chest. Whether we are winning or losing, being praised or doubted, we have our teammates. There’d be a lot less road trips, laughs, and shenanigans in my life if I walked away from quidditch. There’s also just something about walking onto a pitch wearing a jersey that says ‘Baylor’; it never gets old.

QP: Outside of quidditch, what are some of the things you enjoy?
David: Easy. Lord of the Rings Risk, dying in League of Legends, and picking out my motor powered retirement wheelchair!

QP: You're still in school of course. What are you studying?
David: Yep, senior year! I’m a double major in Religion and Linguistics. I’ve loved every minute of it!

QP: Any reason for those two fields? Have you seen much overlap?
David: Yeah, absolutely. My Christian faith is very important to me and defines who I am. Ive always wanted to do cross-cultural ministry when it comes to my vocation. I study religion to understand more about faith (including my own), and I study linguistics because I love foreign languages and want to be able to connect with people who speak them, especially on a faith level. Plus, I’m a nerd, and they're both really fascinating subjects.

QP: Do you know what you're going to do after graduation, both professionally and with quidditch?
David: For the most part. After graduation, Im definitely going to hang up the broom and retire. Quidditch has been really good to me; I've made lasting relationships and have been a part of some crazy sport moments, but there's no team I could see myself playing competitively for besides Baylor University. I've got some time off, so I'll still be around in the fall. Maybe I’ll do some reffing or just help out where I can. Other than that, I'm hoping to work with a ministry in Northeast Africa for two years come late November. I’m really stoked about it!

QP: That's exciting! So that would make this World Cup your last. What's that experience going to be like?
David: Surreal. It hadn't started to sink in until you just asked that. I want to approach it like we did the last regional championship and just soak in every moment with my teammates. I love to win, but I also love pregame dance parties, vertical hip checks with Reed Marchman, and yelling "turn up" more than any 5'8" white guy ever should. It's going to be sad, but it's also going to be a blast. World Cup always is.

QP: How would you describe yourself as a player?
David: I definitely put a good deal of emotion into my playing. It's taken me a while to learn how to control that and keep a cool head on the field (I still fail sometimes), but I also feed a lot off the excitement of others. Other than that, I like to move around a lot. Positioning, agility, and quickness get overlooked a lot when it comes to the beater game. Also, tackling is very cool too.

QP: Let's conclude with a bit of rapid fire. Favorite color?
David: Grey.

QP: Favorite (non-quidditch) athlete?
David: Robert Griffin III.

QP: Spoken like a true Baylor student. Favorite musician/artist?
David: Of course! Taylor Swift! (Yeah, I went there.)

QP: Favorite season?
David: Winter.

QP: Favorite food?
David: Baylor Dining Hall wings; they're the reason Wednesdays are great.

QP: Lucky number?
David: Twelve, though it remains to be proven lucky in any regard.

QP: Thanks, David; we appreciate it!
David: No problem. Thank you!

No comments:

Post a Comment