It is often said that preparation is the key to success, and what athletes do to prepare in the offseason translates to their performance during the season. The same goes for the relationships with your teammates.
2018 U.S. Under-17 National Team members Kendall Milton and Preston Stone weighed in on what it takes to be a good teammate during the offseason.
Stone, a quarterback at Parish Episcopal High School (Dallas) said, “Games are won or lost based upon the amount of preparation and work that is put in before you ever step on the field. The best thing you can do when there are no formal practices or games is to continue to work on your craft and doing everything you can to be the smartest and most skilled player you can be. Put in the work so your teammates know that they can depend on you.”
Being a good teammate all starts with the values and characters of each player. Football teams can only be successful when players have faith in one another and trust each other.
Milton, running back at Buchanan High School (Clovis, California), gave the top three characteristics he looks for in a teammate; loyalty, encouragement, and dedication. As for Stone, the top three characteristics he looks for are selflessness, accountability and dedication.
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Stone and Milton know football doesn’t end when the season ends. It just means the offseason begins, which is why both listed dedication among their top three. Being a dedicated teammate is what everyone wants to see.
So how do you continue that team chemistry in the offseason?
Stone said, “I try to treat my teammates the same as I would treat my brothers; like a family. I enjoy hanging out and spending time with my teammates when we're not doing anything athletic, which creates a stronger bond amongst the team.”
Milton said. “We are a very close team all-around. We go to Hume Lake (in nearby Sequoia National Forest) as a team to bond and keep the chemistry.”
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