Casey and Will
How We Met
Casey: On August 18, 2012, I was moving into my dorm at Vanderbilt University, ready to begin my freshman year of college, when a 6’7” boy appeared in my doorway. Apparently, the football team had been instructed to help the freshmen carry their heavy boxes upstairs, and this offensive lineman had found his way to my room. As you may imagine, my dad was not too pleased to see this large boy arrive and make small talk with his only daughter, just as he prepared to leave her 900 miles from home.
Will: When I first met Casey, I honestly didn’t know what to expect. I came from a different lifestyle than most students at Vanderbilt and I was unsure how Casey and her family would see me. They probably assumed that I was just a “typical jock” trying to pick up another girl. However, that was far from the truth. I was instantly drawn to Casey and her bubbly personality. Nonetheless, Casey and her family made me feel comfortable – even in her own dorm room. It only got awkward for a split second when I decided to voice my opinion about the sport of baseball… to a baseball family.
The awkward moment in Casey’s dorm room proved to be a smaller obstacle to overcome, especially compared to the amount of effort I had to put in to convince Casey to go on a date with me. At first, she wouldn’t budge but, luckily, after some prodding from her friend, she finally accepted my invitation to a fancy dinner at Chipotle.
After that, it was smooth sailing. I told Casey right away that I would marry her one day.
Casey: My favorite thing about our relationship is that, throughout our five years of dating, we’ve grown both individually and as a couple. I have gone on to pursue a career in the field I’m interested in, while Will has successfully pursued a career in the NFL. As literally as I’ve been his cheerleader, he’s also been mine. Together, we’ve moved across country, we’ve explored new cities, and we’ve made new friends. Our life together has been a constant adventure, and I’m so unbelievably happy to be continuing along this crazy journey with Will.
Will: I also love that our relationship epitomizes the saying that “opposites attract.” We look and act like complete opposites. For instance, I’m 6’7”, while Casey is only 5’2”; I grew up in a small, southern town, while Casey grew up in a big city; I go with the flow, while Casey prefers to plan every detail. Our personalities and backgrounds may be opposite, but we are still so compatible. We learn from our differences every day. Casey pushes me to succeed and supports me every step of the way, while I teach Casey to live in the moment and enjoy every day.
How He Asked
Casey: On September 25, 2017, I was cheering for Will as his team, the Arizona Cardinals, took on the Dallas Cowboys for Monday Night Football. It was the first home game of the season, and Will’s family and my best friend, Claire, were in town for the game. Once the game ended, we went to meet Will in the family section. While we were waiting for him, Claire asked me if we could take a picture on the football field. I told her that we weren’t allowed on the field, but she insisted on asking someone who worked for the team anyway.
Will: I had someone who works for the team planted there. When Claire asked if they could take a picture, he said, “Sure” and brought them onto the field. As they walked out, I was standing on the 50 yard line with a ring in my hand, waiting for the girl of my dreams. As she walked up to me, I grabbed her hand and reminded her that I knew I would marry her since our freshman year.
Casey: The rest of what he said was a blur. I just remember standing there, so thankful that such a caring, respectful, and supportive man was standing in front of me, asking me to marry him, while his family, my best friend, and – unknown to me at the time – my parents gathered behind us. I couldn’t help myself as the happiest of tears streamed down my face.
Will: I think she was nodding and saying, “Yes” before I even got down on my knee. I was so happy that I could remain true to my promise from freshman year, and formally ask Casey to marry me.