(WXOW) - Karl Klug didn't get where he is today backing away from challenges. After all, it's a long road from Caledonia to playing pro football for the Tennessee Titans.
Over that road, Klug's battled injury and the odds, but on Sunday, he'll face what may be his biggest challenge yet...
...Playing the Vikings.
After all, Klug's mom said he grew up a huge Vikings fan. Now, he'll be back at the Metrodome where he'll get to play in front of busloads of friends and family all hoping he beats up on the team they too normally cheer for.
"We're not cheering for any Vikings," said Klug's mom, Mary Klug-Silha. "We really need a win."
Klug's former coach Carl Fruechte said, "I'm a Vikings fan, but we've always said here, wherever our Caledonia kids go, be it college or thank goodness the Tennessee Titans, you've got to pull for the Caledonia kid."
Coach Fruechte's pulled for Klug long before he and his brother Kevin helped lead the Warriors to their first state title game since 1976. Despite losing that, Fruechte knew it was the beginning of something special.
"We always felt we had the athletes to--I'm not necessarily saying the pros, but we felt we had kids that could play college athletics," Fruechte said. "That's been our goal and dream. You've got to dream it first. It's really quite an honor to have a man make the highest level of his profession."
Fruechte attributed Klug's success to his mental and physical toughness.
"You have to take your hat off to his mom and dad. They did a great job raising him, teaching. All their kids are just tough kids," said Fruechte.
Now thanks to all of that, Klug's friends and family get a great chance to see that pay off.
Klug-Silha said, "It's nice. It's very nice to have him close because I don't know when we're ever going to have this chance again, you know? So, it's exciting."
And it's well-worth the journey that brought them all back together.