- Steve Shaw’s loyalties aren’t hard to discern. (Herron photo)
Steve Shaw’s not what you’d call a fair-weather football fan.
Oh, he’s a fan, all right. It’s just that his loyalty – understandably – shifts from one week to the next.
The one constant these days is he’s a fan of the Cibola High School football team, understandable this year because his grandson, Cougars tight end/punter Brayden Mummert (6-3, 220), is in his senior season – his fourth on the CHS varsity.
People know Shaw from his days in law enforcement in the City of Vision or as a member for four years of its governing body. He retired from the Rio Rancho Police Department, and had originally worked for the city’s Department of Public Safety, in December 2006.
Today, Shaw is business development manager for First Tactical, covering Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and El Paso. He provides dealer support and oversees trade shows; First Tactical deals with law enforcement in “uniforms, packs, bags, boots, gloves – soft goods,” he explained. (You can tell he misses the days of wearing his RRPD uniform.)
People may also know Shaw played football when he was in sixth grade in Artesia – a neck injury kept him from playing for AHS — and he’s a lifelong Bulldogs fan.
Johnny Unitas and Don Meredith, “and, of course, (Roger) Staubach and Robert Newhouse” were his early NFL heroes
When he and his wife Judy moved to Rio Rancho in 1985, their three daughters went to and graduated from Cibola High – there was no Rio Rancho High School then. With one daughter a Cougars cheerleader, it was natural for him to lean “down the hill.”
Once RRHS opened and started playing football in 1997, and with his daughters by then graduated, Shaw became a Rams fan.
He still recalls Artesia’s first visit to RRHS, on Sept. 8, 2000 – the first game under the lights at Rio Rancho Stadium.
Well, half a game anyway: The Bulldogs led at halftime, 21-0, and the stadium then lost power. Shaw’s been to all the Rams-Bulldogs games, all eight (2000-07) won by his alma mater. Shaw’s been to all of them, here and away.
When Cleveland High opened in 2009, he became a part-time Storm fan. (He didn’t dwell on the fact that the Storm are 6-0 vs. the Bulldogs, whom they’ve met the past six seasons.)
He’s still a fan of those teams, at least until they play Cibola, which the Rams do Friday at 7 p.m. at Rio Rancho Stadium, and the Storm will do next Friday, Oct. 21, at Nusenda Community Stadium.
Shaw will be in the east-side stands this week, and then have one of the best views in the stadium next Friday: He’s on the chain gang for Cougars home games. After the Coogs’ recent 36-20 Homecoming win over Atrisco Heritage Academy, Shaw got on Facebook to note Mummert, who wears no. 83, had nine receptions, good for 123 yards, and two touchdowns.
“Brayden is quite an athlete. Any sport he plays, he excels in,” Shaw said. “He was little playing soccer; maybe that’s what helped develop him. His dad, Ryan, is a UNM alum – he was actually (former Lobo QB) Stoney Case’s roommate.”
Dad coached Mummert’s older brother Will, who played at St. Pius X, and then Brayden’s YAFL teams.
Mummert has had “a lot of interest from colleges,” and Shaw wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up at UNM.
He was a first-team All-State selection at punter and tight end in 2021.
On his twitter page, he says, “Catching, running, blocking and kicking to help my team. Putting in the work for my senior year.”
“He’s a left-footed kicker, and consistently his kickoffs are touchbacks. And he punts a lot,” Shaw said. “He was selected to the All-American Bowl last year, went down to Jacksonville (Fla.) in January.”
Naturally, Grandpa and Grandma tagged along, with Brayden’s folks, Ryan and Brandi, who’s the president of the football boosters club.
“My grandkids are my pride and joy,” Shaw said, with five in all.