Ewing High School graduate and Salina Liberty football player Joshua Hughes. (Photo courtesy of Black Diamond PR & Sport Management Firm.)

On Aug. 10, Ewing’s Joshua Hughes achieved a dream he has been working for his whole life, playing football in a professional football league.

Hughes has been given the opportunity to play in the Indoor Football League in the upcoming season with Salina Liberty, a professional indoor football team based in Salina, Kansas.

The Liberty began play in 2016 as members of the Champions Indoor Football. The team plays their home games at the Tony’s Pizza Events Center, a 7,583-seat arena in the north-central part of the state.

Hughes is a 6-foot-6, 330-pound left guard who starred for Ewing High. In 2016, he won the Dan Bernoski Lineman of the Year award and was nominated for New Jersey Lineman of the Year. He graduated from Wesley College in 2020 with a degree in environmental policy.

In signing with the Liberty, he says he is fulfilling his dream of continuing to play football after college, despite the uncertain future that Covid-19 has produced in professional sports.

The 2020 season of the Champion Indoor Football league was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, but Hughes says he has already begun watching film and learning plays for his new team, which is set to resume play in 2021. At a time when many players have no football home to call their own, Hughes says he is excited to get back in his cleats and continue to do what he loves best.