Even though I’ve never played a down of tackle and my flag career was limited to two seasons of grad school intramurals, football helped create my personal value system and has had a profound impact on my life.
I’ve written about my dad before, for school assignments, in my personal blog, for articles. He’s one of my heroes and I credit both of my parents for making me who I am today. My dad, bigger than life in stature and personality, taught and coached for 36 years at Bensalem High School, just outside of Philadelphia. Growing up, our weeks revolved around his coaching schedule; dinner when he got home, Friday night games, Saturday family activities and sports, Sunday night football film review. Repeat.
I loved every minute of being my dad’s kid and was wildly proud that he was a coach. I learned about teamwork, accountability, reliability, humility and coachability. Also, that the heart and soul of any team is the O-line.
My dad is an educator, by trade and by nature. He passed that on to me and I’ve spent the last 20 years doing it in the sports world. It was a dream to land at USA Football three years ago and every day I come to work driven by our mission. (I swear, I’m not just saying that because my quarterly review is coming up!) I BELIEVE in what we do. I also believe in football being a great vehicle for kids.
When the US Olympic Committee put together a task force to identify common parent resources needed across sports, I jumped at the opportunity. We had a goal of collaboratively identifying what parents need in order to determine their child is enjoying, learning and growing from their sport experience. The USOC brought together people from wildly different sports to accomplish this. We met, debated, discussed and researched for a year with the goal of creating easy to use, universal materials for parents. Our idea was that sport should have a common language when it comes to communication, making those tough conversations between parents, kids and coaches a little bit easier.
We’re proud of the resources that we’ve created and are excited to share them, we hope you find them easy to use, easy to understand and easy to share. Even more importantly, we hope they lead to more meaningful conversations with your child, more time spent doing things that you love and more time being a hero in your child’s eyes, just like my dad was in mine.
Download the first handful of resources below and come back here on the fifth of each month for more!