You went from being a highly regarded soccer player in high school to an NFL hopeful Kicker. Tell us a little about how that came to be?
- My plan was always to go play soccer in college. I had a few offers for soccer. I went to a very small private high school and my junior year was the first year we had a football team. There was about 25 guys that came out for it and with my soccer background, I thought I'd give kicking a try.
WITH JUST 25 guys did you play other positions? If so which do you miss playing the most? Why?
I played receiver and safety. Caught a few TDs and interceptions. Playing receiver was a lot of fun. It was fun playing other positions because it meant you were on the field more.
What was your biggest adjustment from high school to college football?
-The amount of time that goes into meetings/practice. It's a job but I loved it. It's just one step higher from high school to college football. You watch a lot of film which I enjoyed because I loved figuring out ways to get better. You do a lot of extra things other than just practice and mandatory meetings and workouts. There's a lot of little things that go into improving your skills as a kicker such as yoga, stretching, getting in the cold tub, eating right.
Your parents were both collegiate athletes. What have you learned from their experiences?
-It was awesome to have both parents who understand the grind of college athletics. My mom was a volleyball player and my dad was a goalkeeper, both at the University of San Francisco. I learned from them that you have to earn your job and there is always someone competing, trying to steal your job. There is also a lot of balancing between athletics and academics. It's tough but it's doable and both my parents were able to manage both.
10 brothers and sisters ..wow! I can’t imagine being in a family so big that someone has to sit the bench in a family basketball game! I take it that you never had a shortage of ball holders and shaggers?
-Yes, it was always busy. I love coming from a big family. It was great growing up with so many siblings because there was always someone to go outside and play sports with. It was mainly soccer when I was younger; we were all big soccer fans. But it was always nice having someone to play with. Two of my younger brothers kick/punt as well now so it is fun going home and kicking with them!
That's awesome. What main points do you teach your brothers?
There a lot of different techniques to kicking but I’m always making sure my brothers have the basics. I tell them that consistency is key try not to focus on too much when you’re kicking because then your head is going to be cluttered with too many instructions.
A big family will certainly teach you patience and give you thick skin. Sounds like a perfect fit for being a kicker! Tell us how you cope with the ups and downs that kickers inevitably endure.
-Yes, I totally agree that being in such a big family teaches you great lessons and skills that stick with you forever. Being a kicker, you have to move on no matter what happens on that kick. My coach would always say "You're only as good as your next kick". Regardless of whether you made or missed your last kick, you have to move on and focus on the next one. Kicking is a total mental game and very routine oriented. Confidence is key and as long as you stick to your routine and only worry and focus on what YOU can control, you will be solid.
College is a great experience. Memories are made there that will last a lifetime. What memory of college do you think you will hold onto forever?
-College is amazing and especially being able to be on a football team. I will hold onto all of the memories from football. It may sound cheesy but I will remeber all of the terrible workouts, early mornings, and late practices because it was awesome being a part of a team that has the same goal in mind; winning. I will remember every game I played in college. One of the best feelings for was us specialists running out of the tunnel before the game at away stadiums, hearing the booing from the fans.
As you pursue your NFL dream, what absolutes do you feel that you need to follow in that pursuit?
-My wife. She is very giving and supportive in this whole process. She is my best friend and will always need her support when I make it to the league.
What can you tell us about yourself that may surprise people?
-I have travled to Indonesia, Africa, and Dubai.
Can you say why or would you have to kill me? I’m not the killing type. It’d have to be a pretty crazy reason for me to even consider it haha.
Please give short answers for the following:
If someone were to make a movie about your life, who would you hope would play you? Why?
-Robert Downey Jr.- great character and funny guy!
What’s your favorite holiday? Why?
-Christmas. I enjoy being at home with the whole family.
If you could eat only 3 foods for the rest of your life, what would they be? Why?
-Pizza - my all time favorite food.
If you could be a cartoon character for a week, who would you be? Why?
-Goofy from Mickey Mouse. He's a funny character.
If you could have dinner with anyone from history, who would it be? Why?
-Jesus, duh. Who else is better than Him?
What’s a great book you’ve read recently?
-Win At Losing
If you could be an Olympic athlete, in what sport would you compete? Why?
-Curling or Ping Pong. I am decent at shuffleboard and I think it would translate over very well to curling. I love ping pong. We had a ping pong table in our locker room. Luke Falk and I are the best doubles team ever, we could beat absolutely anyone.
Which TV family is most like your own? Why?
-Cheaper by the Dozen because we are one short of a dozen
What do you think is the greatest invention of all time? Why?
-Electricity and or the internet. We use the internet now for everything.