Welcome to the One and One Podcast, where a below average podcaster chats with an above average athlete. Join me, Bridget B., on my quest to get the stories of athletes who have worked just as hard, and have just as many compelling stories, but were not the ones featured on SportsCenter every day.
Xavier Lezynski played football at the University of Notre Dame from 2018-2020 where he went to 2 College Football Playoffs during his career. He talks about growing up in Newtown, Pennsylvania, as the youngest of 4 children, and his family's connection to Notre Dame. Xavier discusses growing up as a Quarterback, then attending Notre Dame High School in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, where he played Safety until his Junior year when he won the starting Quarterback spot. He speaks on his recruitment, his dream to go to Notre Dame and play football, getting wait-listed at first, and then getting into the school. He describes stepping on campus as a Freshman, the process of trying to become a walk-on, and not making the team his Freshman year. Xavier describes his decision not to give up on his dream, trying out again as a Sophomore, this time making the dream, and what it was like the first time he put on the uniform and ran out of the tunnel. He discusses what it was like having his brother, Nick, on the coaching staff, his highlights which include getting into several games, playing on two Notre Dame teams that went onto the College Football Playoff, and the team comradery. Xavier then discusses his life after graduation, living in North Carolina, and working for Mogl, a company created by athletes for athletes.
Alysa Auriemma is an English Teacher and Assistant Coach for the Girls Basketball Team at Miss Porter's School in Farmington, Connecticut. She is also the daughter of UConn Women's Basketball Coach, Geno Auriemma. Alysa talks about growing up in Manchester, Connecticut, growing up around the UConn program, her own basketball career, and why she stopped playing in high school to focus on her greater passion, theater. She explains how much she has always loved reading, including bringing books to the UConn games, and her passion for writing. Alysa discusses why she chose to attend UConn, her own life there away from her father, going to NYC to pursue theater, her decision to return home, go back to school, and pursue English. She describes how she became an English teacher, working at her alma mater Miss Porters, and helping to coach the basketball team. She opens up about some viral moments she had as Geno's daughter, including her piece honoring Coach Pat Summit and tweeting at Morgan William congratulating her after she hit a buzzer beater against UConn. Alysa then talks about the novel she wrote, "All Daughters Rise" that is available now for pre-order, and will be released on January 4th, 2022. She describes her writing process, how she came up with the idea, what the book is about, why she decided to self-publish, and how she's already working on the sequel.
James Bull played lacrosse at UMBC in 2014 before transferring to the University of Maryland where he played from 2015-2017 and was a member of the 2017 National Championship Team. He talks about growing up in Woodbridge, Virginia, how he got into lacrosse, and his great high school career at St. Stephens & St. Agnes where he won several state championships. James then talks about his recruiting process, why he chose UMBC, his Freshman season there where he switched positions, and the reason why he decided to transfer. He discusses picking Maryland, fitting in with the team right away, the team comradery, the competition in the Big Ten, playing for Head Coach John Tillman, and facing several injuries. James details what it was like getting to 3 straight Final Fours, what it felt like to lose back-to-back National Championships in 2015 & 2016, and how the team wouldn't be denied in 2017. He describes the National Title, the celebration, what he is up to now, and how he keeps in touch with the Maryland program and many teammates.
Dr. Andrew Kelley is a physical therapist in the state of New Jersey who treats a wide range of patients, including athletes rehabbing from sports-related injuries. He talks about growing up in Ringwood, New Jersey, playing multiple sports growing up, being a big Duke Basketball fan, and his great basketball, soccer, and track career at Lakeland Regional High School. Andrew then discusses becoming interested in physical therapy after rehabbing an injury, playing soccer at Delaware Valley University for 2 years, his decision to transfer to the University of Delaware, his time on the club soccer team for UDel, and getting to work with athletes like Elena Delle Donne. He explains the road to becoming a physical therapist and going to Rutgers-Newark for Physical Therapy school after receiving an undergraduate degree from UDel, going through clinicals, getting his doctorate, and the other certifications he has. Andrew describes a day in the life of a physical therapist, working with people of all ages, the major sports related injuries he sees, how he helps athletes get back on their feet after injuries, and how he follows their careers afterwards.
Diamond Gillis played football at Colorado School of Mines from 2010-2014. He talks about growing up in Aurora, Colorado, how he got into football, playing Quarterback at a young age, and his great career at Cherokee Trail High School where excelled in football, basketball, and was an Honors student. He tells the great story of coming into the game as a Sophomore backup quarterback and winning a State Playoff game. Diamond discusses his recruiting process, why he chose Colorado School of Mines, a Division II school, and the unique academic experience that Mines offers. He describes the transition from high school to college football, redshirting his freshman year, switching positions from Quarterback to Wide Receiver, the hard work he put in to be one of the best receivers on the team, and how he balanced athletics and academics. Diamond then explains his career highlights at Mines, the success the program had, his decision to return for a 5th year, and making the SportsCenter Top 10 Plays list for an insane catch he made in 2014. He talks about what he's been up to since graduation, becoming a husband and father, and keeping football in his life by coaching at the high school level.
Brianne Reed is a Professional Soccer player currently playing overseas in Denmark and also is a member of the Dominican Republic National Team. Collegiately, she played at Rutgers from 2012-2015 and helped them reach the Final Four in 2015. Brianne talks about growing up in Tinton Falls, New Jersey, how she got into soccer, her club career highlights, and her great soccer and track & field career at Red Bank Catholic High School. She discusses the recruiting process, why she chose Rutgers, the transition from high school to college soccer, and what it was like to play in 3 different conferences in 4 years. Brianne details her great career at Rutgers, playing the important position of Center Back, getting to the NCAA Tournament all 4 years, and the run to the Final Four her Senior year in 2015. She then talks about getting drafted into the NWSL in the 2016 Draft, her time playing with FC Kansas City, and her decision to go overseas to play. Brianne explains her time in Sweden, the different style of soccer that is played, her current career in Denmark, how & why she decided to join the Dominican Republican National Team, and how she balances both.
Gerry Wixted play basketball at Dickinson College from 2011-2015 where he became the school's all-time leading scorer and National Division III Player of the Year as a senior. He talks about growing up in Moorestown, NJ, coming from a large athletic family, how he got into basketball, and why he chose to attend Camden Catholic High School. Gerry describes his great career at Camden Catholic where he played for a great coach and won a state title. He details his recruiting process, an injury that slowed the process down, why he chose to do a year of prep school, and what led him to choose Dickinson College. Gerry then explains his phenomenal career at Dickinson where his class posted the most wins in school history, made it as far as the Elite Eight in the DIII NCAA Tournament, and became the all-time leading scorer and National Player of the Year. Gerry discusses why he chose not to pursue a professional career overseas and became a boarding school history teacher and coach.
Karlie Cronin played basketball for Ohio State from 2017-2019. Prior to that, she played on the Ohio State Lacrosse team in 2016-2017 and started her college career playing basketball at Southern Methodist University in 2015. She talks about growing up in Oakton, Virginia, how she got into basketball, playing AAU for the Fairfax Stars, her great career at Oakton High School where she won a State Championship in basketball, started playing lacrosse as a Sophomore, and received accolades both sports. Karlie then discusses her recruiting process, why she wasn't happy with it, and what led her to choose SMU. She then details the reason she left SMU, her decision to play lacrosse after being burned out from basketball, choosing Ohio State, and her time on the lacrosse team. Karlie explains her decision to go back to basketball, getting on the Ohio State team, playing for Head Coach Kevin McGuff, the success the Buckeyes had her Junior year in 2018, and tearing her ACL prior to her Senior season. She then talks about how and why she created Blindspot Recruiting, a platform where athletes can rate coaches and schools, her interest in design, going to Grad School at the University of Colorado, and her internship with the Women's Basketball Team.
Nick Wehby played football at the University of Indianapolis from 2010-2012 before a devastating injury off the field in the summer of 2013 ended his career and left him fighting to regain use of his arms and legs. He talks about growing up in Mason, Ohio, how he got into football, his great career at Mason High School where he played offense, defense, and special teams, and the recruiting process that led him to choose Division II UIndy. Nick then discusses his career at UIndy which included redshirting his Freshman year, playing Defensive Back, and a breakout Redshirt Sophomore year for himself and the team. He explains the injury that happened in the summer of 2013 where he dove into a swimming pool and broke his neck, the doctors telling his parents he would never walk again, and Nick beating the odds and walking out of the hospital just a few weeks later. He talks discusses how the Mason and UIndy Community rallied around him, the difficult rehabilitation process, and coming to terms with never being about to play football again. Nick then discusses how he's feeling today and his relationship with Bachelor Nation's Sydney Lotuaco.
Brielle Buckler has worked for the NBA and currently works for Bleacher Report. She also has experience in wine, becoming a sommelier, and has merged both these passions to be a part of the series "Full-Bodied", a Bleacher Report show where athletes chat over wine. Brielle talks about growing up in Paramus, NewJersey, coming from a supportive family, playing softball and soccer as a kid, getting into bowling in high school, and her decision to attend the University of Miami for undergrad. She talks about how an accident led her to change her major to sports, attending grad school at the University of South Florida, and getting a job with the NBA before she graduated. Brielle discusses her career in the NBA, helping to start up the WNBA team Dallas Wings, and working at several All-Star Games and Drafts. She explains how she got into wine, taking classes, studying different regions of wine in the world, wanting to learn all she can about it, and starting her business Viva La Vino NYC. Brielle describes her current job at Bleacher Report, how she got involved in the show "Full-Bodied", her role in the show, and how she and her fiancé, Matt, have traveled the country in the past year
Tatum Hackenberg (maiden name Coffey) played lacrosse at Penn State University from 2012-2015 where she was a 2-time All-American, then played professionally in the United Women's Lacrosse League for the Long Island Sound, and now is a coach and trainer for 3 Point Lacrosse. She talks about growing up in Toms River, playing soccer, basketball, and boys hockey, and not playing lacrosse until she was a Freshman in high school. She describes her great career at Toms River North High School where she earned 12 varsity letters, scored over 300 goals in lacrosse, was 1st team All-American, and was the MVP of the Under Armor All-American game. Tatum discusses her recruiting process, originally picking UMass, and how she ended up at Penn State. She then talks about her phenomenal career with the Nittany Lions, winning a Big Ten Conference Championship, making the NCAA Tournament twice, being a 2-time All American, meeting her now husband Christian, the former Penn State and NFL Quarterback, and how they made the relationship work through busy schedules and long distance. Tatum explains her time as a sideline reporter in college, playing professionally for the Long Island Sound, and her goal to grow the game of lacrosse in the Toms River area through training and coaching at 3 Point Lacrosse.
Mitchell Simmons is the Director of Operations for the University of Wisconsin Women's Basketball Team. Prior to this role, he was the Director of Operations for the Boston University Women's Basketball Team from 2019-2021, and was a student manager for the UConn Women's Basketball Team from 2015-2018. Mitchell talks about growing up in Hartland, Vermont, playing basketball and soccer growing up, how several injuries on the soccer field led him to UConn, and why he decided to become a student manager. Mitchell describes the hard work that student managers put in, what it was like working with the coaching staff, and becoming friends with many of the players. He discusses the opportunity to become Director of Operations at Boston University when Marisa Moseley took the head coaching position, being a full-time DOBO and a part-time Graduate Student, and his time at BU. He then explains why he took the DOBO job at Wisconsin when Marisa Moseley took over as Head Coach, his relationship with her, and his excitement for the upcoming 2022 season.
Ben Lynch played baseball at Drew University from 2007-2011. He talks about growing up in Paramus, New Jersey, how he got into baseball, becoming a pitcher, his best pitch, his club baseball career, and his career at Paramus High School. Ben describes his recruiting process, why he chose Drew University, only being a pitcher in college, and the transition from high school to college baseball. He discusses some career highlights, injuries he faced, coming out of the bullpen, funny stories on the mound, and his relationship with his coach. Ben then talks about his life today, getting married to his wife Danielle, being a qualitative stock trader, and recently having his first child.
Natalie Novosel is a former professional basketball player who spent 5 years playing in the WNBA and overseas. Collegiately, she played at the University of Notre Dame from 2008-2012 where she helped them to 2 straight Final Fours. She talks about growing up in Lexington, Kentucky, coming from an athletic family where both her older sister and twin brother also played college basketball, her AAU days, and her great high school career at Lexington Catholic where the team was one of the best in the country. Natalie describes the recruiting process, why she chose Notre Dame, playing for Muffet McGraw, and her hard work in the summer following a disappointing Sophomore season. She then discusses her Junior year in 2011 where she was the Big East's Most Improved Player and helped the Irish reach their first Final Four in 10 years, beating Tennessee and UConn along the way to the championship game. She also discusses her fantastic Senior year in 2012 where the Irish were one of the best teams in the country, getting back to the Final Four, and her game-tying put-back to send the game to overtime and ultimately defeat rival UConn. Natalie talks about getting drafted 8th in the WNBA Draft, her time with the Washington Mystics, her great overseas career where she mostly played in Australia, going through 3 ACL tears, deciding to stop playing, and what she's been up to since she retired from the game.
Taylor Burke is a musician currently based out of Nashville who recently released the EP "Dog Days". Growing up, he was a phenomenal baseball and basketball player in South Jersey and also happens to be Bridget B.'s cousin! He talks about growing up in Moorestown, New Jersey, getting into sports through his father, his passion for music starting at a young age, learning to play guitar, and creating a band with his friends. He discusses special trips to Cameron Indoor Stadium to see Duke vs. UNC games with his dad, his athletic career at Moorestown High School where he was a varsity baseball player as a Freshman and a key member of his basketball team's underdog run through the state tournament his Senior year, his band Macklin recording a song that was available on streaming platforms, and why he chose to attend William & Mary for college. Taylor discusses his continued pursuit of music being in bands in college and grad school, being a stand-up comedian, his decision to move to Nashville, taking voice lessons, and what it's like to be a musician in that city. He then talks about his EP he released in 2019, his process to writing music, his most recent EP "Dog Days", and his upcoming music ventures.
Tommy Massimino Jr. works in Operations for the Orlando Magic of the NBA. Previously, he was a student manager for the Villanova Men's Basketball Team from 2009-2013, an Assistant Video Coordinator for the Iowa Men's Basketball Team from 2014-2015 and worked in Operations for the Denver Nuggets from 2015-2017. He talks about growing up in Barrington, Illinois, being the grandson of the late Rollie Massimino, being from a basketball family, and his basketball career through high school. Tommy explains why he chose to attend Villanova, the process of becoming a student manager, all of the duties involved, learning to cut film, and what it was like working for Head Coach Jay Wright. He then details his time at Iowa working under Head Coach Fran McCaffery, making the jump to the NBA, his time working for the Denver Nuggets, and working with Ed Pinckney. Tommy describes his current position with the Orlando Magic, what it's been like working during the pandemic, the exciting young Magic roster, and his continued support for both the Villanova and Iowa programs.
Taylor Sharp is a film producer who has created the film "Hoops Africa" and is currently working on the film series "Hoop Portraits". He is also a University of North Carolina sports superfan. Taylor talks about growing up in Morganton, North Carolina, how he became such a big Tar Heels fan, and deciding to go to the school himself. He discusses how he became so close to the basketball team, his friendships with Brice Johnson and Marcus Paige, traveling for all of the NCAA Tournament games, his summer in Africa where he learned about the concept of Ubuntu, and how this inspired him to create his first film, "Hoops Africa". Taylor goes into detail of what the film is about, the process of making it, and how he was involved in every step. Taylor then discusses creating Blue Cup Productions after he graduated from college, how COVID-19 has affected his work, and what his next project "Hoop Portraits" is all about, and the pilot episode "Two Ways to The League".
Geno Morelli is an MMA Fighter who wrestled collegiately at the University of Pittsburgh from 2012-2014 and Penn State from 2015-2017. He talks about growing up in DuBois, Pennsylvania, being a lifelong Penn State fan, coming from an athletic family, how he got into wrestling, and his great career at DuBois High School. Geno describes his recruiting process, why he originally chose Pittsburgh, highlights of his 2 seasons there, and why he decided to transfer to Penn State during his Junior year. He then discusses what it was like to wrestle for his dream school, the competitiveness of the Big Ten Conference, the pedigree of Penn State Wrestling, getting to the NCAA Championships in 2016, and winning several team NCAA National Championships. Geno then talks about getting his MBA, marrying his high school sweetheart, working in the business world for a while, his decision to leave his job to go all in on becoming an MMA Fighter, his training process, his first fight, and his upcoming fights.
Jared Miller played Professional Baseball in the Arizona Diamondbacks farm system from 2014-2019. Collegiately, he played at Vanderbilt University from 2012-2014 and helped the team win the 2014 National Championship. He talks about growing up in Avon, Indiana, how he got into baseball, when he started pitching, and his great high school career where he excelled at baseball and basketball. Jared describes the recruiting process, why he chose Vanderbilt, the transition from high school to college baseball, and what it was like living in Nashville. He then details his great career at Vanderbilt, how good the team was, what it was like to play for Head Coach Tim Corbin, his experience at the College World Series in Omaha, and winning the 2014 National Championship. Jared discusses his decision to forgo his senior season after getting drafted, his 6 year professional career where he reached as high as Triple A and made the 40 man roster for the Arizona Diamondback, why he retired in 2019, and what he's been up to lately.
Shay Knighten is a professional softball player for the USSSA Pride and an Assistant Coach for the University of San Diego Softball Team. Collegiately, she played for the University of Oklahoma from 2016-2019 and won 2 National Championships. Shay talks about growing up in Buena Park, California, her athletic family, how she got into softball, and her great career at Sunny Hills High School. She describes her recruiting process, why she chose Oklahoma, and what it was like to play for Head Coach Patty Gasso. Shay details her successful Oklahoma career, getting to 4 College World Series, and winning back-to-back National Championships in 2016 & 2017. She then talks about her current professional softball career with the USSSA Pride, her hopes to see professional softball grow, her coaching career at San Diego, and what it's like to coach with her older sister, MJ.
Marc VandeWettering is the Director of Operations for the University of Wisconsin Men's Basketball Team who recently came out as the first openly gay man on a Division I College Basketball staff. He talks about growing up in Kaukauna, Wisconsin, how he got into basketball, and growing up as a huge Wisconsin Badgers fan. Marc describes his great career at Kaukauna High School where he was an All-Conference player and class Valedictorian his decision to attend Wisconsin-Madison rather than play basketball at a lower division college, and why he became a student manager for the basketball team. He then details the hard work student managers do, working for Bo Ryan and Greg Gard, and getting to back-to-back Final Fours in 2014 & 2015. He also talks about the internal struggle of accepting himself as a gay man and whether he belonged in the sport of basketball. Marc discusses his coming out process, the Wisconsin staff accepting him, and Coach Greg Gard calling him back to Wisconsin in 2017 to become the Director of Operations because he was the best person for the job. He describes the work that goes into the Director of Operations, how the article came about, why he decided to write it, and his hope that it helps others feel more comfortable about themselves and realize that there is a spot for them in the sport regardless of sexuality. Marc's Article: https://uwbadgers.com/news/2021/6/24/general-news-baggot-my-words-living-my-truth-by-marc-vandewettering.aspx
Julie Hubbard played soccer at Penn State from 2009-2010 and then transferred to UConn where she played from 2011-2014. Throughout her soccer career, Julie has overcome 4 ACL tears. She talks about growing up in Waverly, PA, being a twin, how she got into soccer, her great career at Abington Heights High School, committing to Penn State, and tearing her ACL the first time as a Junior in high school. She discusses how the first rehab process got her interested in physical therapy, her career at Penn State, her decision to transfer to UConn, tearing her ACL 2 more times between 2011-2013, but not giving up on soccer. Julie describes coming back for the 2013 season where she started every game, her great 6th season in 2014 where UConn won the American Athletic Conference Championship, studying physical therapy in college, and going through a 4th ACL tear when she was playing in a league in San Diego during her clinicals. She then talks about why she started her business Just 4 Kicks Boston where she helps young women with ACL recovery and prevention.
Scott Merritt is the Associate Head Coach for the University of Wisconsin Women's Basketball Team. He played basketball at Marquette University from 2000-2004, was a member of the 2003 Final Four Team, and then played 9 years professionally in the US and overseas. He talks about growing up in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, how he got into basketball, his high school highlights at Wauwatosa East, the recruiting process, and why he chose Marquette. Scott details what it was like to play for Head Coach Tom Crean, having Dwyane Wade as a teammate, and his career highlights which included getting to the 2003 Final Four. Scott then discusses his professional basketball career, what it was like to play overseas, why he retired, and how he got into coaching women's basketball. He talks about his experience as an Assistant Coach for the Marquette Women's Basketball Team which included several Big East Titles, his time with the Illinois Women's Basketball Team, why he took the job at Wisconsin, and his excitement for the 2022 season.
Shane Clark played basketball at the Villanova University from 2005-2009 and was a member of the 2009 Final Four Team. He talks about growing up in Philadelphia, his lifelong friendship with NBA star Kyle Lowry, how he got into basketball, playing AAU, and his great career at Cardinal Dougherty High School. Shane describes his year at the prep school Hargrave Military Academy, what military school was like, his recruiting process, picking Villanova before de-committing and committing to Maryland. He then details the transcript mistake at Maryland that led him back to Villanova, what it was like to play for Jay Wright, playing with his childhood friend Kyle, his career highlights, being a two-year captain, and the great run to the 2009 Final Four. Shane discusses his professional career overseas, what he is up to in his life now, and his continued support for the Villanova basketball program.
AJ Burgett is a professional basketball player who currently plays for Etzella in Luxembourg. Collegiately he played for the University of Notre Dame from 2012-2016. He talks about growing up in Avon, Indiana, how he got into basketball, playing AAU, his great career at Avon High School, his recruiting process, and why he chose Notre Dame. AJ describes what it was like to play for Mike Brey, getting his body ready for college basketball, playing in the Big East and ACC, highlights which include an ACC Tournament Championship and back-to-back Elite Eight appearances, and some injuries he faced. He details his time away from basketball after college, interning for Notre Dame, his role in the Matt Farrell/Bo Farrell reunion, and re-discovering his love for basketball while working games at IU. AJ then talks about the process to get overseas, playing for several teams in Europe, his current team Etzella, and how well he has been playing as a professional.
Michael Catalino played lacrosse at Duke from 2006-2010, went to 4 Final Fours, and was a member of the 2010 National Championship team. He talks about growing up in Webster, New York, how he got into lacrosse, playing with his brother Grant, who went on to play at Maryland and professionally, and his great career at Webster Schroeder High School. Michael describes the recruiting process, why he chose Duke, and being interested in their medical program. He details his Freshman year in 2006 where the "Duke Lacrosse Scandal" happened, how he felt during that time, and getting through it with the bond he and his teammates had. Michael then talks about the comeback year in 2007, being one of the best teams his entire career, winning multiple ACC Championships, and how he balanced the rigorous academics with Division I lacrosse. He details the great 2010 season where Duke wins the National Championship, ending his career as a champion after the way it started, his journey to medical school, his current training in neurosurgery, and the beautiful wife and children he has.
Taylor Schwarz played softball at the University of Florida from 2013-2016 and was a member of the back-to-back National Championship teams in 2014 and 2015. She talks about growing up in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, coming from an athletic family where her father played professional baseball and her brother JJ is currently playing professional baseball, how she got into softball, and playing on a club team with girls from all over the country. Taylor discusses her great Palm Beach Gardens High School career, the recruiting process, and why she chose the University of Florida. She then describes her incredible Gator career, playing 1st Base, her love for defense, making it to the College Softball World Series 3 times, winning 2 National Championships, and what she's been up to since graduating in 2016.
Kevin Tangney played soccer at the University of Maryland from 2005-2009, was a member of 2 National Championship teams, and was then drafted 35th in the 2010 MLS Draft. He talks about growing up in Newtown, Pennsylvania, getting into soccer through his father, and playing club & ODP. He discusses his great career at Council Rock North High School, playing with his older brother, and winning a few league titles. Kevin details his recruiting process, why he chose Maryland, and the transition to college soccer. He then talks about winning the 2005 National Title as a Freshman, tearing his ACL as a Sophomore, and then again as a Junior, the struggles he faced, and his hard work and determination to get back on the field. Kevin explains what it was like to come back as a Senior, win the 2009 National Championship, returning for a 5th year where he had his best season, being drafted in the 2010 MLS Draft, and what he's been up to since his soccer career ended.
Maria Lubrano played soccer at the University of North Carolina from 2007-2012 and was a part of 3 National Championships. She talks about growing up in an Italian household in High Point, North Ca rolina, how she got into soccer, her successful club & ODP career, and her excellent high school career at Wesleyan Christian Academy where she excelled at basketball and soccer. Maria describes the recruiting process, her final two choices being UNC and Duke, why she chose UNC, the powerhouse soccer program that UNC has, and what it was like playing for Hall of Fame Coach Anson Dorrance. She then details her great 6 year career at North Carolina where she struggled through injuries, had to redshirt twice, and persevered to end her career with a National Championship- her 3rd in 6 years. Maria talks about playing professionally in Italy, retiring early due to injury, and her career as a soccer trainer.
Nicole Arcidiacono was a walk-on for the Penn State Women's Basketball team from 2007-2010. She talks about growing up in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, coming from a large, athletic family, how she got into basketball, and her experience playing AAU. Nicole discusses her great high school career with Archbishop Wood, the recruiting process, her decision to attend a large college and just play club basketball, the reason she chose Penn State, and her freshman year where she played on the Club Basketball team. She then details her decision to try out as a walk-on for Penn State, the try out process, what it's like to be a walk-on, and her great career where she started multiple games and was awarded a scholarship her Junior and Senior years. Nicole talks about watching her brothers Ryan and Chris play at Villanova, her fun experience at the 2016 Final Four, and what she's been up to since graduating from Penn State.
Anthony Bilas was a walk-on for the Wake Forest University Basketball team from 2015-2019, is the son of famous college basketball analyst Jay Bilas, and currently works for the NBA. He talks about growing up in Charlotte, North Carolina, how he got into basketball, his AAU experiences, and his great high school career at Charlotte Latin School where he played basketball and was nationally ranked on the Speech & Debate team. Anthony describes the recruiting process, his decision to walk-on for a big Division I school, and why he chose Wake Forest. He discusses playing for Head Coach Danny Manning, the important role walk-ons have, getting better every year, playing in the NCAA Tournament, getting a scholarship his Senior year, and his great experience on Senior Day. Anthony then talks about staying in the basketball world after graduation, getting a job with the NBA, and living in New York City.
Frank DeAngelis played baseball at Metropolitan State University of Denver and coached both baseball and football at Columbine High School from 19981-1994. He was the Principal of Columbine on April 20th, 1999, when 2 students killed 13 people and injured many others. He would go on to lead the community through the tragedy. He talks about growing up outside of Denver, playing many sports as a kid, his three-sport high school career, and playing some college baseball at Metro State. Frank describes getting to Columbine in 1979 as a teacher and a coach, the highlights of being the assistant football coach and the head baseball coach, the kind of coach he was, and having to stop coaching once he became the Principal. He discusses going to every event as Principal- athletics, plays, concerts, debates, etc. Frank then provides details of April 20th, 1999, saving 25 young girls' lives, and how his background in coaching helped him lead the community. He brings up his thoughts on the media at that time, making a promise to stay at Columbine until the youngest students in the school system graduated- and then staying an additional 2 years, helping other communities deal with similar tragedies, and writing the book, "They Call Me Mr. De- The Story of Columbine's Heart, Resilience, and Recovery".
Taylor Williamson played for the University of Minnesota Women's Hockey Team from 2015-2019 and was a part of the 2016 National Championship Team. She talks about growing up in Edina, Minnesota, her family ties to the sport, how popular hockey is in the state, and her terrific career at Edina High School. Taylor then discusses the recruiting process, why she chose Minnesota, and winning a National Title her Freshman year. She describes medical struggles that started during her Sophomore year, what the symptoms were, having to have emergency brain surgery, and then being diagnosed with Myasthenia Gravis (MG). Taylor details the long recovery process, how she got back on the ice, during her Junior year, scoring the game-winning goal in the WCHA Championship game against Wisconsin, and playing her best hockey during her Senior year in 2019. Taylor talks about how she is feeling today, and becoming the Girl's Hockey coach for Wayzata High School with her father.
Brendan Jorgensen was the 2020 Number 1 Draft Pick for Major League Wiffle Ball and was a member of the 2020 World Series Championship Team. He talks about growing up in Trenton, Michigan, the sports he played as a kid, playing Wiffle Ball with friends as a kid, attending Adrian College, and running Track there for a bit. Brendan describes how he got involved with Wiffle Ball again, how he joined MLW, and being the number draft pick for 2020. He explains what Major League Wiffle Ball is, the rules, the structure, how a season is played, and his success in 2020 with his team, The Gators. Brendan discusses how important pitching is, having a net with a zone that calls balls and strikes, and his best pitch. He talks about winning the 2020 World Series, the games being on Instagram Live and Youtube later on, the great competition, looking ahead to the 2021 season, and how much he thinks MLW can grow and evolve.
Tony and Stephanie Meier are a married couple that met while both playing basketball at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Stephanie (maiden name Stephanie Schell) played there from 2007-2011 and was a 4 year captain, while Tony played there from 2008-2012 and then spent 8 years playing professionally overseas. They talk about both being from basketball families, their childhoods, the different high school basketball careers they had, and their separate recruiting processes that led them to Milwaukee. They then discuss how they met, what dating was like as Division I athletes, their career highlights at Milwaukee which includes both being one win away from the NCAA Tournament after getting to the Horizon League Conference Tournament Finals, Stephanie being a leader, and Tony scoring over 1,000 points and grabbing over 500 rebounds. They explain their lives right after graduating from Milwaukee (Stephanie joining the coaching staff at Hillsdale College and Tony playing volleyball for Quincy University), Tony having the opportunity to play overseas, the proposal story, when Stephanie joined Tony overseas, adventures they've had around the world, having two beautiful children, why Tony decided to retire from basketball after 8 seasons, and their lives in Missouri.
Alex Miller is an Assistant Coach for the University of North Carolina-Greensboro's Women's Basketball team. She played at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill from 2004-2009, went to 2 Final Fours, and was a member of 4 straight ACC Tournament Championship teams. Alex talks about growing up in Durham, North Carolina, being a lifelong UNC fan, how she got into basketball, playing in the Junior Olympics with future UNC teammates, and her great career at Hillside High School. She describes her recruiting process, why she chose UNC, what it was like playing for Hall of Fame Coach Sylvia Hatchell, playing behind point guard Ivory Latta, and how quick the team was when they both played together. Alex then discusses the ACC rivalries with Duke, Maryland, & NC State, getting to 2 Final Fours, winning 4 ACC Tournaments, her devastating knee injury that happened in the beginning of the 2007-2008 season, and her recovery to get back on the court for the next season. She talks about her decision to get into coaching after she graduated from UNC, playing semi-pro, coaching at her high school and AAU, how she got into college coaching, her time at Mississippi Valley State, her current position at UNCG, and how she thinks the 2022 squad will be.
Chris Hornacek is a Professional Spikeball Player and is the only player to have played in every tour stop in a tournament season. He explains what Spikeball is, how it's played, how he got into it, and how it's evolved from a beach/backyard game to a sport. He talks about his decision to turn professional, what being a professional entails, the tournament landscape, and some of the cool places he's visited on tour. Chris discusses how far he's gone in the competition, turning his basement into a practice room, and how the 2020 season was affected by COVID-19. He then talks about taking a bit of a hiatus from Spikeball to pursue Pickleball, what Pickleball is, and finishing in 2nd place in his first tournament.
Emily Costanzo played soccer at the University of Connecticut from 2015-2018 and was a captain of the 2018 team. She talks about growing up in Ellington, Connecticut, being a lifelong UConn fan, getting into soccer with her twin brother, James, and her outstanding career at Ellington High School where she was 2-time All State, and played multiple other sports as well. Emily explains her interesting recruiting process, why she chose UConn, the transition from high school to college soccer, and why her jersey number 6 was so special to her and her family. She discusses her 4 year career where the Huskies made the NCAA Tournament twice and won the American Athletic Conference Title, embracing her role on the team, being a leader even though she didn't play 90 minutes a night, and how she wouldn't change her career. She then talks about attending Quinnipiac Law School, interning with the Ole Miss Athletic Department, and having another year before she graduates and becomes a lawyer.
Ray Hunnicutt excelled in 2 sports: he played Minor League Baseball in 2012 & 2013 after being drafted in the 40th round of the MLB Draft in 2012, and then played college basketball at Lake Forest College from 2014-2016. He talks about growing up in St. Charles, Illinois, how he got into both baseball and basketball, and his outstanding high school career at Burlington Central where he broke the scoring record in basketball and won a Sectional Championship in Baseball with his brother, Reed. Ray then discusses being recruited for both basketball and baseball, making the decision to pursue baseball, and then his reactions when he found out he was drafted in the 2012 MLB Draft. He describes his decision to pursue professional baseball, his experience playing 2 years in the Minors, attending college during the offseason, and why he decided to play college basketball after 2 years. Ray explains why he chose Lake Forest, getting back into basketball shape, his 2 year career there, and what he is up to today.
Elizabeth Pelton is a former United States Swimmer who also swam collegiately at the University of California-Berkeley from 2012-2016 where she helped win the 2015 National Championship. She talks about growing up in Fairfield, Connecticut, but moving to Baltimore, Maryland, at a young age, coming from a large family of swimmers, and representing the United States and traveling the world at such a young age. Elizabeth describes her high school career where she was homeschooled due to traveling so much for her swim career, her recruiting process, why she chose Cal, knowing Head Coach Teri McKeever through US swimming, and coming so close to making the 2012 Olympic Team. She then discusses her great career at Cal where she won National Swimmer of the Year as a Freshman, being teammates with Missy Franklin, having a talented team at Cal where they won many races and events, including the 2015 National Title, swimming internationally during the summers, and why she chose to retire after the 2016 Olympic Prelims. Elizabeth talks about her life now in the Bay Area, still being involved in swimming, giving lessons, and working in marketing.
Chad Toliver is a professional lacrosse player who most recently played for the Boston Barrage in Major League Lacrosse in 2020, and collegiately played at Rutgers from 2015-2018. He talks about growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, how he got into lacrosse, and what it's like to be a black athlete playing a predominantly white sport. Chad describes his high school career at McCallie School for the first 3 years, why he transferred to Milton High School for his Senior year, and his excellent lacrosse and football career at both schools. He discusses his decision to pursue lacrosse instead of football in college, the recruiting process, why he chose Rutgers, playing in the Big Ten, and his career highlights at Rutgers. Chad then talks about playing professionally in the MLL, coaching high school lacrosse, and the 2020 bubble season where Chad and the other black athletes in the league (MLL-4) spoke out about social justice and wanting to see changes in the sport of lacrosse. He explains the merger of the MLL and PLL, getting ready for the 2021 season, and continuing to use his platform to seek change.
Julie Shaw was a softball pitcher for the University of Sciences in Philadelphia from 2010-2012. She was named to the Bergen County All Decade Team after her great career at Ramapo High School. Julie talks about growing up in Wyckoff, New Jersey, getting into softball through her father, becoming a pitcher, and her great club softball career. She then describes her excellent career at Ramapo High School where she was a cheerleader and a softball player, being the backup pitcher, but having to step up her Sophomore year when the starting pitcher went down, and leading Ramapo to a Sectional Title in 2007. She talks about going back to backup her junior year, continuing to DH, and then being the ace in 2009 and leading Ramapo to another Sectional Title. Julie discusses her recruiting process, why she chose USciences, the transition from high school to college softball, not having the career she exactly wanted, but making great friends that she's still close to today, and continuing to have softball in her life by giving pitching lessons in her free time.
Emily Waner played basketball at the University of Colorado in 2003-2004 before transferring to Duke where she played from 2005-2008 and was a member of the 2006 Final Four team. She then went on to attend Duke Medical School, completed her residency at the University of Washington, and now works as a Hospitalist in the Denver area. She talks about growing up in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, coming from a very athletic family, how she got into basketball, playing AAU for the Colorado Hoopsters, and her outstanding high school career at Thunderridge where she won the 2003 State Championship with her sister, Abby. Emily describes her recruiting process, why she chose Colorado, and her Freshman season there. She then explains her decision to transfer, wanting to play at the same school as her sister, and their decision to go to Duke. She discusses her career at Duke, what it was like playing with her sister, making the 2006 Final Four, deciding on a career in medicine, attending medical school, doing her residency in Washington state, and her decision to come back to the Denver area.
Tony Sorrentino is an Assistant Coach for the Northern Illinois University Football team. Collegiately, Tony played football at The College of New Jersey from 2001-2004 and has coached for almost 20 years at every level- New Jersey high schools, colleges, and the NFL. He talks about growing up in Parsippany, New Jersey, coming from a very athletic family, getting into football through his father, and his great career at Mountain Lakes High School where he was a 3-sport athlete. Tony discusses the recruiting process, why he chose TCNJ, his 4 year career with the Lions where he mostly played Wide Receiver, and his involvement in youth coaching in the community. He then explains always wanting to be a coach, his first job working at a high school with his father, coaching at TCNJ, several stints at Power Five teams- University of Minnesota, University of Miami, and University of Tennessee. He describes his 4 years coaching in the NFL with the Jacksonville Jaguars, coaching with Lane Kiffin at Florida Atlantic University, his current job at Northern Illinois, and looking ahead to the 2021 football season.
Lauren O'Connell played soccer at Baylor University from 2014-2017 and then appeared on Season 38 of the hit reality show Survivor in 2019 where she finished in 5th place. She talks about growing up in Bakersfield, California, how she got into soccer, her great career at Frontier High School where she was a 4 year varsity starter, and her club soccer career. She discusses the recruiting process, why she chose Baylor, and the transition from high school soccer to Division I college soccer. Lauren then describes her career at Baylor, being injured 85% of her time there with several knee injuries and Compartment Syndrome, learning to be a great teammate, and her incredible senior season in 2017 where Baylor won the Big 12 Conference and made it all the way to the Elite Eight. She explains watching the show Survivor since she was a little girl with her family, making it on the show after applying just once, her experience on Season 38, the twist of "the Edge of Extinction", her friendship with Kelley Wentworth, the misplayed idol, and whether or not she'd play again.
Ashley & Lauren Engeln are twin sisters who both played collegiate and professional basketball. Ashley played at Johnson & Wales- Denver in 2010-2011, Orange Coast Community College in 2011-2012, and Concordia University Irvine from 2012-2014. Lauren played at the University of Connecticut from 2010-2012 and Boston College from 2012-2015. They both then played professionally overseas for 5 years, and spent their last season together in Italy. They talk about growing up in Laguna Hills, California, how they got into basketball, their great careers at Laguna Hills High School, and their separate recruiting processes. They then discuss their careers in college, what it was like being away from each other, why they each transferred, and always supporting each other even though they were on opposite coasts. Lauren & Ashley describe their time overseas playing professional basketball, the amazing sites they saw, and the decision to play one last year together in Italy in 2020 before retiring. Since retirement, Ashley has started her own company "Drips to Sips" where she sells wine collars. She talks about how she came up with the idea, what a wine collar is, and getting the product in retail stores.Ashley's Website: www.dripstosips.com
Kassidy Shumway played soccer at Brigham Young University from 2007-2010. She talks about growing up in Bountiful, Utah, being the oldest of 5 children, how she got into soccer, and her excellent career at Woods Cross High School where she played soccer, basketball, and was the Valedictorian. Kassidy then describes her recruiting process, why she chose BYU, and being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She discusses being able to play right away as a freshman, being a top team that always made the NCAA Tournament, the great success they had in the Mountain West Conference, meeting her husband through watching a Utah Jazz game, and what it was like being married in college. Kassidy explains her feelings on an incident her junior year in 2009 where a player on New Mexico pulled her down by her ponytail, the fame she received as the clip made its rounds on TV and the internet, and whether she ever received an apology. She talks about what she's been up to recently, being a mother, and her continued support for BYU.
Ryan Smyth is entering his 11th season on the Keystone College Baseball coaching staff. He played collegiately at Boston College, Brookedale Community College, and Keystone College, and also played professionally with the Evansville Otters. He talks about growing up in River Edge, New Jersey, coming from an athletic family, and how he got into baseball. Ryan describes his great career at Don Bosco Prep High School, his recruiting process, why he chose Boston College, and why he transferred after one year. He then discusses his transfer to Brookdale in NJ, his two years there, making the Junior College World Series, being named First Team All-American, and transferring to Division III Keystone College in Pennsylvania for his final 2 seasons where the team went 70-15. Ryan talks about his season playing professionally in the Frontier League, his decision to become a coach on the staff at Keystone College, making it to 2 College World Series, winning 15 straight Conference Titles, and coaching in the Cape Cod League in the summers. He also explains his love for golf which has become a family affair with his wife and daughter.
Ashley Hoffman is the team captain for the United States Women's National Field Hockey Team. She plays professionally overseas in the FIH Pro League, and collegiately, she played at the University of North Carolina from 2015-2018 where she was an All-American and won a National Championship. She talks about growing up in Mohton, Pennsylvania, getting into field hockey through her mother, Brenda, who was a member of US Olympic Field Hockey Team in the 1980s, and playing multiple sports growing up. Ashley describes her great 3-sport career at Twin Valley High School, being coached by her mother in field hockey, and playing on the youth national teams. She then discusses the recruiting process, why she chose UNC, graduating high school early to join the team, and her incredible 4 years at North Carolina where she played in 4 Final Fours, went undefeated her senior year and won the National Title in 2018, and also played on the National Team. Ashley talks about her experience on the National Team, being voted as team captain at such a young age, her overseas career in The Netherlands, her desire to grow the game of field hockey in the United States, and her company "Become Uncommon".
Cory Andersen worked as a Gameday Marketing Assistant for the University of Connecticut's athletic program from 2010-2013, and now works in music management and has developed Cory Andersen Productions and PRYSM Music Management. He talks about growing up in Enfield, Connecticut, being a lifelong UConn fan, and being into sports from a young age. Cory then details why he chose to attend UConn, why he wanted to work in the sports marketing department, his duties as Gameday Marketing Assistant, and how basketball was his favorite sport to work at. He describes many of the other activities he did as an undergrad, including working at a radio station and traveling into New York City for internships. Cory explains why he wanted to get into the music industry, the first few steps he took out in Los Angeles after he graduated, working with Nick Jonas and Gavin DeGraw, being an entrepreneur, starting Cory Andersen Productions, and creating PRYSM and some of the very talented artists he's been working with. He also discusses his continued support of UConn athletics and the Hot Sauce Challenge with The Husky Ticket Project.
Camille Little played in the WNBA from 2007-2019 and won a championship with the Seattle Storm in 2010. Collegiately she played at the University of North Carolina from 2004-2007 where she went to 2 Final Fours. She talks about growing up in Winston Salem, North Carolina, how she got into basketball, and her outstanding career at Carver High School where she won the State Championship in 2001, was the Gatorade Player of the Year in North Carolina for 2002 & 2003, and a McDonalds All-American. Camille describes her recruiting process, why she chose UNC, and being in the same class as Ivory Latta. She then details her great career at UNC where she won 3 ACC Tournaments, went to 2 Final Fours, and played for Hall of Fame Coach Sylvia Hatchell. Camille talks about falling into the 2nd round of the WNBA Draft, playing for San Antonio and Atlanta before being traded to Seattle where she won a title and still keeps up with her teammates today. She discusses her time with Connecticut and Phoenix, why she decided to retire in 2019, and her recent marriage.