At Nebraska Soccer Talk, we love covering everything soccer related. For the most part, that means covering games and providing analysis/opinions. However, our overall mission and purpose is far reaching and ambitious. Our goal is to bring the soccer community closer together through collaboration and communication. There are countless people that deserve recognition for their efforts as a player, official, or coach. Throughout the season, we will be highlighting these individuals through our Get To Know Me articles.
This will be a series made up of three different components. All of which are meant to bring attention to the soccer community.
- Get To Know Me (Coach Edition) – These individuals are responsible for building their programs, growing the game of soccer, and mentoring the next generation. We look forward to learning about their lives and philosophies.
- Get To Know Me (Player Edition) – This article series will focus on high school juniors and seniors that have demonstrated themselves to be quality players and people. With these features, our community will learn about some of the most impressive players in the state.
- Future of the Game – This article series will focus on the freshmen and sophomore classes. These are players that we will be covering for years to come.
Thank you to every individual that provided information for this idea. We appreciate your thoughtful and timely responses.
Name of High School Program: Papillion LaVista Monarchs Boys (11th year)
Club Team: Gretna Elite Academy Girls 2013 assistant
Occupation Outside of Coaching: Elementary Art Teacher Portal and Golden Hills Elem
Favorite Professional Soccer Team: Liverpool
Soccer Idol (Player or Coach): Brazilian Ronaldo
Who would you consider to be your soccer mentor? What is the story behind your selection? How did they help you in your soccer journey?
Jay Mims-Union Omaha-Back when he was with Creighton we played on several indoor and outdoor teams together and have always just talked soccer. When he was at UNO I was able to attend practices and training sessions. Over the years, he has always been someone willing to share ideas with young coaches. He even provided a free leadership seminar over the Covid break in 2020. Jay has gone out of his way to include me in some amazing soccer experiences.
Describe a favorite soccer memory that you have been involved with. This memory could be from your playing or coaching experiences. Tell us the story and impact of this memory.
Getting to the state semifinal in 2019 a year after we had only won 4 total games in the previous season. You start to question if what you are doing is reaching the student-athletes and then something like this run we went on validates everything and provided memories that will last a lifetime.
List and describe three important pillars or values of your program. What is the culture of your program built on? What do they mean to you?
-Quality-Family, School, and Soccer
-Enjoy the Process as success comes in many forms.
I try to provide a variety of opportunities for my players to grow as individuals within their family, school, and team. We feel that giving back is important as all of the people came before them provided the opportunities that they now take part in. The experience should be a fun one…don’t get so caught up in outcomes as much as enjoying each soccer opportunity and time with the team while learning how to play the game.
What is your motivation for coaching? This is a time-consuming and challenging occupation. Why do you do it?
I guess it’s all tied to that idea of giving back. So many people in my younger years provided quality coaching to me and it’s my turn to pay it forward. The relationships you build with your players are what keep me in the coaching world. I now have a few former players who are getting into coaching themselves and being a mentor to them is very rewarding.
Thank you for reading and being a part of our new community. A like, share, comment or recommendation of content would be greatly appreciated. In order to financially support our efforts, sponsorship/partnership opportunities have become available. Sponsors will receive vast exposure to the Nebraska soccer community through different media avenues. The sponsorship process is easy and reasonable.