Bethel High School
In the sixth grade, something happened to Austin Melson of Bethel High School. Something that would change his life path for the next several years. He played football.
Now a junior at Bethel and playing for head coach Joey Ginn, Melson said he loves playing football and seeing everyone come out to support the team.
“Bethel is a small town where sports are a pretty big deal. Being able to represent my town is something that I take pride in doing,” said Melson. “I grew up playing baseball. I started playing football in sixth grade and immediately fell in love with it.”
For Melson, there are many things to love about the football. As a middle linebacker obviously the physical element to the game is something Melson does not shy away from, but it’s also about his teammates and what it means to go into battle with your brothers.
“I love the family aspect of it. I love going out on the field in front of your whole town competing. It’s also free violence,” said Melson.
Last season as a sophomore, Melson was as productive a player as any coach could wish for. Melson tallied 106 tackles, three tackles for loss and one interception. Coach Ginn said, “Melson will anchor our defense at middle linebacker having registered 106 tackles as a sophomore and over 100 tackles as a freshman in 2012.”
Melson said he has enjoyed many memorable moments on the field, but a few things stand out.
“I will be the mike linebacker for us. I’ve started there since week five of my freshman year. I love representing Bethel because like I said earlier, it’s a small town that doesn’t have much more than a dollar general and a couple gas stations. High school sports are a big deal here and I love running out of the tunnel in front of your whole town and competing. My most memorable moment so far is my freshman year when we played Purcell. It was a very important game for us to win because of our district seeding. We went out there and executed and it was definitely the most fun game of my high school football career so far.”
Melson is quick to talk about his teammates and give them credit for their contributions to the overall success of the program.
“2026 linebacker Luke Quinter is one to watch. The kid is a freak athlete and has the chance to be one of the best players to come out of Bethel. 2025 offensive lineman Alex Barnett; he is a dude and just showed out at the Bixby O-line camp a few weeks ago,” said Melson.
After looking at the schedule, Melson had a comment about the upcoming season and one of his opponents. “I’m most excited about this group of guys that we have. We have put countless hours in this off-season competing and getting better every day. I’m excited to play McLoud. They have become a rival over the past few years and its always one of the most fun games of the year,” said Melson.
After high school, Melson plans to play football in college and study business. He would also like to become a firefighter. His favorite subject in school is History and his favorite teacher is Coach Blizzard.