I hope your senior year of high school went well and that you are having a great summer. It is quickly coming to a close and you will soon be on campus. Summers have always been my favorite part of the year but for you, this one is different. The transition from high school to college is one of the most exciting experiences that someone can go through, and I hope your embracing it for what it is worth. This September you are going to be feeling all sorts of emotions from scared to eager to excitement. It is normal to have these mixed feelings, but you will quickly settle in within a couple weeks and the college life will be normal to you.

Upon arriving, you will immediately be part of the team. This is a privilege and an honor to be a part of the tradition that awaits you. It takes hard work, intelligence, planning and focus to be a successful student-athlete. From a personal stand point, take control of your studies right away and do not slack off in the classroom. By doing so, everything else will take care of itself and it will just be an everyday activity that you love to do. When we step out on that field, we are a unit, we are a team. Whether its practice, agilities, a scrimmage, or a game, we are all in it together. I hope you are doing your part this summer in preparing physically and mentally so that we can achieve our ultimate goal of winning a national championship.

While probably the best summer of your life so far is coming to a close, you are getting ready to embark on a mission with a bunch of new teammates. Take this time seriously to prepare yourself for the challenges that your coaches and teammates are going to put in front of you. We collectively have worked hard for years to build towards what we are today and I have no doubt with the addition of yourself and your other classmates we will continue that tradition.

I look forward to you joining our team in the fall. It is just a short time now.

Your teammate

Throughout my career motivated individuals have surrounded me. This inspiration at times was tough to feel during the daily grind, and other times the real life energy was obvious. When our paths cross, I am proud to see that the athletes come up to me for a handshake or high five and the stories they remind me about put an instant smile on my face.

This new segment will showcase the letters that many have written, myself or the athletes and coaches that I have worked with; to share their inspiration with those we call “teammates.” As you read through the messages that are shared, please remember that what is inside you can separate you from the rest. Look around and you may be surprised how many others are in need of just a little enthusiasm to push them closer to their goals: professionally, physically, mentally, etc.

I will begin with a letter that I sent to a team that I am still very proud of to this day. No names needed. Just a sincere message that I hope can impact others to pay it forward by giving energy to those around them.

Please leave your feedback in the comments section at the bottom. How are you preparing your team, coaches, administrators, staff, co-workers, sons, daughters, mothers, and fathers to have a positive mindset in both good and challenging times?