A dream job deep in Bears country

Ozaukee High grad with an economics degree parlays his love of football into video internship that has him rubbing shoulders with the Monsters of the Midway

WITH HIS video camera in hand, Cole Large stood among Chicago Bears players during a practice.
Ozaukee Press staff

When the Green Bay Packers visit the Chicago Bears to kick off the NFL’s 100th season Thursday night, at least one Wisconsinite and his family will be rooting for the Monsters of the Midway.

Cole Large, a 2014 graduate of Ozaukee High School, is in his second season working for the Bears as a coaches’ video intern.

Large shoots video of players for coaches, players and scouts to watch. At practices, he will often capture individual drills, working right next to professional football players.

“I’m really liking it. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” Large said of working in the NFL. He has been a “crazy fan” since he was a child and played football all four years of high school.

Getting to know the coaches and “messing around” with the players has been one of the most fun aspects of his job.

The players, he quickly realized, aren’t much older than him.

“I thought about that when I got here,” he said. “There’s only one of them over 30.”

They also aren’t the gods they are sometimes made out to be.

“They’re just normal people. They’re just guys like you and me,” he said. “The way they handle the attention they get is pretty impressive. They can’t go to the grocery store without getting mobbed. I thought maybe some of them would be arrogant. You don’t really see any of that.”

Large was surprised by another aspect of the organization.

“It’s very family oriented. You’re not there very long before people get to know you,” he said. “I think (coach Matt) Nagy and general manager Ryan Pace drive a lot of that.”

Large graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in May 2018 with an economics degree. He never shot video before and didn’t take any classes on it, but he captured footage for the football team for three and a half years.

“Like a lot of jobs, if you invest yourself in it you’ll pick it up pretty quick,” he said.

His boss at the university knew a couple of Wisconsin alumni who work for the Bears, he said. When Large learned the Bears were looking for people, he jumped at the chance.

A couple of days after graduating, he joined the organization.

At games, Large handles the tablets on the sideline during the first half, handing them out and making sure they’re working properly, and heads to the booth for the second half to capture footage from the end zone.

Large travels with the team and will be going to London for a game this year.

Last season, he had to work in Detroit on Thanksgiving but flew back to Chicago and made the 80-minute drive north for dinner with his family at 7 p.m.

Large won’t comment on his favorite football team growing up, but said his family of four brothers and sisters and his parents are all Bears fans after apparently being converted.


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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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Port Washington, WI 53074
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