The Houston Dynamo had a special guest on Saturday.
The Texans' first-round draft pick of 2013, wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, performed the coin toss out on the pitch at BBVA Compass Stadium before the Dynamo's match with Toronto FC. And he was excited to do so.
“It was a great feeling to come out to support this team,” Hopkins said. “They're established, they're a good soccer team and the fans out here are incredible, so I just wanted to be a part of it.”
Hopkins has been a soccer fan for about ten years.
“My best friend growing up was a real big soccer player,” Hopkins said. “He was ranked in state and went to college to play, and so when I would go over to his house, that's what he wanted to do was go play soccer, so I became a fan like that.”
Even though he has been a fan of Barcelona and Real Madrid and enjoys watching Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Didier Drogba, he’s excited to be in a city with a successful soccer franchise.
“It's great,” Hopkins said. “It just creates an atmosphere for each sport – it's competition almost because to me every sport wants to be the best here. It makes everything in the city and the environment great.”
Hopkins has threw out the first pitch at the Astros game on May 21, and wants to make it a priority to support other sports teams in Houston.
“It's very important to me because hopefully this is my home for a long time, so I want it to feel like my home, and at home I watch all my teams that support us, so that’s what I'm going to do here,” Hopkins said.
During his brief time in Houston so far, Hopkins has also enjoyed the restaurants, downtown and the parks. But before Texans training camp starts up again on July 26, Hopkins plans on spending most of his time at home in South Carolina and doing what he says will be “training and preparing for my job.”