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A recurring series on WGLT's Sound Ideas about the central Illinois athletes who do incredible things, even after the game is over.

Beyond Sports: Central Catholic's Josh Vogel

Josh Vogel standing
Josh Vogel will compete in five sports at Central Catholic High School during his senior season.

The coronavirus pandemic gave student-athletes a lot of idle time over the past year as their sports were put on hold. Josh Vogel, a senior at Central Catholic High School in Bloomington, has in some ways been more active than ever.

Vogel is the first high school athlete WGLT has profiled for its Sound Ideas series: Beyond Sports.

Male athletes running in cross country meet
Credit courtesy
Josh Vogel, center, is a captain on the Central Catholic cross country team.

Vogel competes in track, swimming, and bass fishing at Central Catholic. He's also a captain on the school's cross country team. That's one of the few sports that went on this year without interruption. The schedule shifts enabled to him take on another sport -- football.

“That was nice. I always wanted to do football and now football was moved to the spring and since track got moved from the spring to the summer, I was able to do football along with swimming and cross country and track,” Vogel explained. “It’s been hectic, but it’s pretty nice for me that it worked out this way.”

Josh's dad, Scott Vogel, is the public address announcer at Central Catholic. He proudly shared a moment when he called his son’s name after Josh made an acrobatic catch during a recent game.

Vogel said it’s been a challenge to compete in sports while wearing a mask and complying with all the COVID-19 protocols, but he said he doesn’t mind as long as it gives him a chance to play.

“Masks in football (are) not very fun, but people are just happy to be playing,” Vogel said.

Josh Vogel standing with his parents
Credit courtesy
Josh Vogel standing with parents Laura and Scott Vogel at a swim meet.

Cross country is not considered a team sport like football, but Vogel unintentionally showed how being a good teammate can help others.

Vogel ran well enough in the track regionals that he would have qualified for the sectional meet, but he was disqualified for wearing the wrong bib number. His teammate Will Foley qualified in his absence.

“I was sad at first. I was really upset, but then I realized I didn’t want that one mistake to define who I was and show everybody that I was a quitter,” Vogel said. “I wanted to bounce back and help my teammates. And show what a leader and a captain is supposed to do.”

Vogel has a 4.0 grade average at Central Catholic. He’s a member of the National Honor Society and is on the CCHS scholastic bowl team. He also participated in the school plays and musicals.

He plans to study mechanical engineering at Southern Illinois University in the fall. He wants to help design electric vehicles, either at Rivian Automotive in Normal or another EV manufacturer.  

“That would be pretty cool to stay here and help the community a bit,” he said. “I definitely want to do something that helps the environment.”

Vogel said he envisions the day will come soon when electric vehicles will become the dominant mode of transportation.

“The sooner the better I think, because right now, gas is going way up. Oil is going to run out eventually, might at well start making this shift now,” he said.

Editor's note: WGLT corrected this story to reflect the disqualification came during a cross country regional meet. 


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