Jack Jones painted a picture of resilience as he sat inside the Marist College change rooms.
He was about to lead the college's First XV into action and knew he could show no weakness if he was to ask his teammates to rise to the occasion.
It was much the same story when he moved to Sydney University and closed in on a place in the Shute Shield.
But then something changed.
Suddenly the walls began to close in on someone who had rarely thought he could find himself in such a situation.
"I really struggled to stay on the field with injuries, and that's the same time my mental health challenges started to pop up," Jones said.
"Unfortunately being in that environment, it's not a conversation that is fostered, and it is not a conversation that happens normally.
"We're just the big, tough guys who don't show weakness. Unfortunately that's not the case [underneath]. It needs to be made available to young men, and young men who are athletes.
"On the field, showing no weakness and being unstoppable is a really valuable skill and sometimes it makes you a better athlete.
"It's really important we teach athletes to take that off once they step back over that white line and say in other aspects of their life, there are times they are going to need help and need to ask people for support."
That's why Jones has played a role in helping The Banksia Project launch its first Canberra growth room with plans to meet on the fourth Wednesday of every month.
Because he wants to see a change. Scratch that, he needs to see a change.
Three out of four Australians who take their own lives are male, and suicide is the biggest killer of men aged 15 to 44.
The Banksia Project trains community members to support each other, providing the skills and framework to do so, while giving them access to qualified mental health professionals should they be required.
"We were founded out of too many young blokes trying to take their own lives," Jones said.
"Our founder made an attempt on his own life, and after surviving that and working through some of his issues and challenges, he went 'what did I need?'
"I'm a straight, white, well-educated male, I played sport, I had great friends and a great family, but I still didn't know how to deal with my own emotions safely.
"I went through my own journey of depression and came out the other side of that.
"I spent a lot of time working on it and went 'well, how can I stop others who may be going down that pathway?'
"That's what brings me to Banksia today. I get to spend my day helping other blokes.
"They tend to be onto something if one of your mates pulls you aside and says 'I've noticed you're struggling a bit, is there something behind that?' It tends to hit home."