NFL quarterback Matt Flynn, college standouts Braxton Miller (Ohio State) and James Franklin (Missouri) and Florida recruit Max Staver all attended NFA camps to elevate their games to the highest level.
They tapped the expertise of a standout NFA staff of coaches that includes founder Darin Slack, Will Hewlett, JC Boice, Dub Maddox, Chad Case and Adam Britt.
Hundreds of fledgling young quarterbacks from all over the United States and Canada have also reaped the benefits of the NFA experience, including Ben Trubia.
“I don’t know what’s made a bigger impression on Ben, Coach Slack’s talks or learning the detailed mechanics of throwing a football,” said Rob Trubia, Ben’s dad. “Ben’s always had a strong arm. He’s barely 70 pounds and he routinely can throw the ball well over 30 yards, but I knew that would only take him so far. There is so much to the position of quarterback and we knew he’d need elite coaching to realize his potential.
“So when we found NFA we were thrilled! In a few short years NFA has already taught Ben so much about playing the position of quarterback, not to mention what it means to truly lead his teammates. We know football ends for everybody no matter how good they are, so the fact that NFA is teaching our son servant leadership makes this a lifetime investment.”
From throwing motions to footwork, NFA coaches are highly skilled at teaching and implementing the mechanics found in all quality QBs.
But they also help develop the traits that allow quarterbacks to step up and become great leaders on and off the field.
Ben Trubia attended his first NFA/QB Next camp in Baltimore as a third grader and followed up with a trip to the invitation only Duel competition in Canton Ohio.
After winning the fourth/fifth grade competition, Ben played quarterback for a sixth grade team in a larger football program near his home in Fairfax, Vermont.
“We were really proud of him,” said Wendy Trubia, Ben’s mom. “He didn’t know any of his teammates at the beginning of the season and before the first game it was clear that he had won their respect and friendship despite the fact that he was a fifth grader playing on a sixth grade team.”
Despite being over 100 pounds lighter than his center and often being the shortest player on the field, Ben had a big season at QB and his efforts won him his team’s “Rookie of the Year” award.
“Clearly, Ben wouldn’t be accomplishing what he is without NFA,” Rob Trubia said. “We’re thrilled for him.”
Ben actually helped NFA following his fourth grade season. He was asked by NFA to guest star with Coach Slack and his son, Michael Slack, in a brand new instructional DVD specifically created for the young quarterback.
Ben worked with Coach Slack on camera demonstrating dozens of fun backyard drills that young quarterbacks can do with their dad or coach to help develop their skills. The DVD is expected to be released by NFA in time for Christmas.
Ben’s busy schedule also includes photographing high school football games in his hometown of Fairfax.
“My dad’s a professional photographer and has shot a lot of NFL football games, including Super Bowls, so I have always thought sports photography was cool,” Ben said. “It’s really fun being right on the sideline and you have to guess what each play will be so you’re ready for the best picture. It’s just like if you were playing.”
Ben was pleasantly shocked to see his published work for the first time in his community’s daily paper. “It was really neat to see one of my pictures across the front page of the sports section,” he said.
While he plans on playing quarterback for as long as he can, when it’s time to hang up his cleats Ben figures his camera will keep him in the game.
The Vista del Lago Eagles from Folsom, CA completed a 9-1 regular season on Nov. 2 to earn a No. 2 seed in the Sac-Joaquin Div. III playoffs. I caught up with starting sophomore QB Matt Jimison in the midst of his team’s preparation for a second-round game against No. 10 El Camino (also the Eagles). Vista opened the playoffs with a statement win for the rest of the bracket, a 44-0 shutout over Lincoln during which Jimison threw for 172 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
Photo by Doug Guler
The numbers are a modest representation of his eye-popping season. He had individual games of 419, 377, 355 and 276 yards. Through 11 games, he’s thrown 34 touchdowns to just six interceptions with a 67.5 completion percentage. If that’s not enough, he made his first start three games into the season.
The Eagles may be expected to reach the section championship game (presumably against top-seeded Oakdale), but Jimison doesn’t let the growing playoff tension affect him. “We are just taking one game at a time. El Camino is going to be a good test for us. They have some big players and a strong running back (Desmond Boyd-Tanner) that we will have to be ready for, so we’ve been preparing hard for this game all week.”
Vista’s high-flying offense is rounded out by a similarly young core that will help make the Eagles a force beyond just 2012. Leading receiver Brad Rittenhouse (717 yards, 13 TDs) is a sophomore. Leading rusher Josh Pfeffer (897 yards, 14 TDs) and second-leading receiver Tyler Kaim (556 yards, six TDs) are juniors. Jimison asserts, “I really think we have the best group of receivers in California. We throw the ball downfield a lot, and they’ve been able to handle every route.”
Following a first-week loss to Div. I powerhouse Oak Ridge, the Eagles have since soared to 10 straight wins. Most of those were lopsided games, but a late-season win over league foe Cosumnes Oaks stands out. Facing a Wolfpack defense that had allowed an average of 11 points through seven games, the Eagles had their work cut out.
Despite overcoming that defense throughout the game, Vista trailed 34-28 late and needed a magic ending from Jimison and the offense. “We run the two-minute drill every Thursday just for these situations. The O-line was giving us all the time we needed that night and really helped us get down the field. I think there were 12 seconds left when we got the winning touchdown. Both our teams were co-conference champions last season, so now there’s this good rivalry developing.”
Cosumnes Oaks are the No. 5 seed in the opposite half of the bracket from Vista, so it’s possible the Eagles and Wolfpack could meet again for the Div. III section title.
With the start of the CIF-North Coast Section playoffs just days away, Cardinal Newman’s (CA) Keaton Dunsford returned from a late-night practice for a quick chat on the phone. The 6’4 junior QB is in his first season at the varsity level, but that didn’t stop him from leading the Santa Rosa-based Cardinals to a 9-1 record.
Thanks to a 67 percent completion percentage and 20 touchdowns to just four interceptions, his team earned a No. 3 seeding in the Div. III playoffs with a scheduled first-round matchup against No. 14 Sonoma Valley.
Only a 21-14 loss to Rancho Cotate, a 10-0 Div. II team, prevented Cardinal Newman from completing the same perfect season. Both teams entered the game with matching 8-0 records and tied atop the North Bay League. No team played the Cougars as closely this season as the Cardinals. “Our guys fought hard in that game, and we received invaluable experience facing bigger players like them, which helped us get ready for the playoffs.”
As Cardinal Newman won by an average score of 38-10 during the regular season, Dunsford cherished the few close games his team was a part of. “I definitely prefer the more intense situations like that. We don’t necessarily go out there to win by 40 or see the other team lay an egg. Like any competitor, I like being in those close games.”
Dunsford faced an interesting test to close out the season against Petaluma’s Casa Grande, the No. 4 seed in the Div. II playoffs. For the first time ever at the varsity level, two teams headed by NFA-trained QBs faced each other on the field.
The Gauchos are led by fellow 2014 starter JaJuan Lawson, a dual-threat specialist. “We’ve spent time practicing together in different camps, so it was a lot of fun to be out there at the same time,” Dunsford told me of the game, which ended in a 25-7 win. “I felt bad because JaJuan was dealing with injuries, so I just wish he could have been at his best.”
Both Lawson and Dunsford are personally coached by Will Hewlett, who attended the game between his pupils’ schools. “I’ve been working with him one-on-one for about three years now, but I’ve been going to the NFA camps longer than that and I have the training DVDs as well.”
Dunsford’s offseason plans are taking shape as he prepares for the recruiting process following his breakout season. “I’m going to camps at some Ivy League schools like Harvard and Yale. I’ve been to those before, and I’m also doing the Notre Dame and Stanford ones.”
Carrying a 4.42 GPA, Dunsford is able to hold his own both off and on the football field, but he now turns his attention to his first varsity playoff experience.
The Newburgh, Indiana, quarterback was ranked as the 69th best player in the country by Youth 1 before taking the first snap for Castle South Middle School.
And once the season started, Keller showed why.
A shoulder injury prevented the eighth grader from putting up eye-popping statistics, but Keller still managed to lead his team to a second-place finish with a 5-4 record.
“I don’t even know what my stats were, to be honest,” Keller said. “Overall, I was just happy with the improvement by the team. I thought we got better as the season went on and I’m pretty proud of all the them.”
Castle South was in first place late in the season before a tough 6-0 loss knocked them out of the top spot. The rocket-armed Keller threw a 50-yard touchdown pass on the first of the game but it was called back on a blocking penalty.
Keller was happy with his final season of Middle School football.
“I thought I improved myself over the season,” he said. “I think I became more of a leader. I tried to lead the team all season and I thought I did pretty well.”
Now, Keller can start preparing for football at Castle High School.
His goal remains the same – win the starting quarterback job as a freshman.
“I know it’s a huge responsibility, but I think I can take over,” Keller said. “I’ll make sure I’m ready for it.”
Keller is going to train with Coach Will Hewlett and NFA/QBA for the fifth year in order reach his goal.
“I’ve learned a lot from Coach Will and going to NFA camps,” Keller said. “This off-season, I’ll just try to work harder and keep training with Coach Will and when I get to high school try to compete for a position.”
Keller got a jumpstart toward high school this season as he often operated out of the no-huddle, spread offense. Castle High School runs the same offense, so the transition should be smooth.
“Just knowing the formations is something that really helps,” Keller said. “Knowing the play calls and right ideas. Knowing when to do something and when not to do something. We ran the spread and no huddle a little this year. It’s very fast and we throw the ball a lot. I really love it. I think it’ll be great.”
While he is currently playing basketball for Castle South Middle School and Castle High’s feeder team, Keller is not going to forget about football over the winter.
“Whenever I’m sitting around at the house, I like to go outside and throw the football,” he said. “And I like to keep up on doing little things, ball-handling drills and things like that.”
When he gets back to NFA/QBA training, Keller knows one area of his game that still needs some work.
“I need to work on my footwork, taking a three-step drop and getting back a little faster,” he said. “Or just work on doing a three-step drop. Try not do my oversteps and just stay with the fundamentals are other things I’ll work on.”
Let’s just state the obvious here – Sean Clifford is ready to play high school football.
Quarterback – Sean Clifford #13
After a stellar seventh grade season at Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy Middle School (1,375 passing yards, 18 touchdowns) last year, equally big things were expected out of Clifford in eighth grade.
He delivered, in a big way.
Clifford actually split the 2011 season quarterbacking CHCA’s seventh and eighth grade teams, and he spent the entire ’12 season with the eighth grade Eagles.
The experience from last year paid off as Clifford completed 80-of-116 passes (69 percent) for a staggering 1,781 yards this season.
Operating out of the spread offense, he also passed for 26 touchdowns while throwing just 1 interception.
“I think overall, our team just got better as a unit,” Clifford said. “That allowed me to really get the ball out to my wide receivers better.”
Clifford is as humble as they come, but he is a standout athlete and he can already throw a football nearly 50 yards.
Before he begins training for high school football next year, Clifford reflected back on the recently completed season.
Naturally, he focused on the team as a whole rather than his remarkable individual statistics.
“Last year we were 5-2-1 and all the teams we lost to last year we beat this year,” Clifford said. “We were pretty excited about that. That was our goal this year, to beat every single team that we lost to last year.”
The eighth-grade Eagles wound up posting a perfect 8-0 record this season, and they beat Clark Montessori in the final game to claim the Miami Valley Conference Championship.
“From the start of the season to the end, it was a great season for us,” Clifford said. “We were able to accomplish a lot of good things.”
Clifford already showed he is going to be a very good quarterback at the next level, and his six years of attending NFA/QBA camps has spurred his development.
But Clifford is also a standout basketball player, and his new season is off and running.
Last year, the 6-footer led Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy to a third-place finish in the Ohio state tournament.
Clifford is hoping for similar success on the hardwood this winter, but he is still a football player first.
“Definitely, football,” he said. “It’s kind of tough having to play a full basketball season and trying to keep up with football. But I try to do the best I can to keep football in the mix all year round.”
Tyler Lytle keeps showing why he is one of the best young quarterbacks on the West Coast.
Not only did the San Diego native lead the Torrey Pines Falcons to an 8-0 record this season, Lytle was selected to play in the 2013 Junior Rank Junior Academic All-American Game. An eighth grader, Lytle also excels in the classroom and has a 3.83 GPA.
The Junior Academic All-American Game will be played on Jan. 4, 2013 at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. A 7th Grade All-American Game will be played before Lytle steps under center for the West team in the 8th Grade All-American Game.
Not only is being selected to play a tremendous honor, it gives Lytle another shot at playing in a game before he prepares for high school football.
“I am having a blast playing this great game,” Lytle said. “My success is a result of the great coaching this summer and in season. It is also the hard work, studying and training I have put in since starting to play QB last season.”
An exceptional athlete, Lytle has improved his quarterback skills by attending NFA camps the past year.
With the Torrey Pines Falcons, all of the hard work and training paid off as he threw just 1 interception.
This year, Tyler played for his father, Mike Lytle.
“My dad always tells me: ‘Pressure is a privilege,’” Tyler said. “You should enjoy the fact that you are feeling pressure because it means you are relevant to whatever it is you are participating in.”
Playing together helps ease the pressure on the rising talent.
“The team aspect of this game is what I enjoy most,” Lytle said. “It is 11 guys on the field trying to dominate the 11 on the other side. Strategizing or calling an audible to expose a weakness.”
Lytle started his football career as a running back, and he has the speed and athletic skills to continue playing the position.
But look for him to stick at quarterback, where Lytle is combining his physical ability and smarts.
“I’ve been lucky enough that my coaches have trusted me enough to call those audibles on the field,” Lytle said. “I really have my coaches and my supporters to thank for putting me in a position to succeed.”
He’s been a huge success with the Torrey Pines Falcons, but Lytle is able to keep himself grounded and humble.
“I believe that you are never above something,” he said. “Even the simplest things can improve whatever it is you’re doing, whether it is in football or life. So I’ve been keeping an open mind and learning as much as I possibly can that will help me in the future.”
Lytle’s goal is playing college football at Southern California.
If he continues performing at such a high level and improving against tougher competition, the dream could become a reality.
To: NFA nation
Re: Keep an eye on Washington state
In September, we told you about Zach Lewis, a Seattle-area quarterback and budding entrepreneur – http://nfanation.com/lewis-a-success-on-and-off-field/
A rising star at Eastside Catholic Middle School, Lewis also helped launch Creative Astronauts, an apparel company, in May of 2011.
On the other side of the state – Spokane – Jake Keyes is also doing remarkable things on and off the football field.
Keyes, who attended his first NFA camp last spring, threw for a touchdown and ran for 3 more in the first four games for Cataldo Catholic School this season.
Away from the field, he scored an even bigger accomplishment.
Let’s backtrack a bit.
Before he was even born, Jake’s father, Michael Keyes, became a big fan of Notre Dame football during the Lou Holtz era. NFL Hall of Famer Joe Montana played for the Fighting Irish before Holtz arrived, but the Keyes family kept track of him during Montana’s glory days with the San Francisco 49ers.
“It all kind of started when my dad got me a 49ers hat and I started watching San Francisco,” Jake Keyes said. “Then I read a book Joe Montana wrote and that got me interested in Notre Dame.”
A visit to South Bend, Ind., for a football camp in 2010 further spurred Jake’s interest in ND football, and that led to another book.
This time, Jake was the author.
At the age of 10, he penned: “The Little Gipper’s Welcome to Notre Dame Football.”
The book is now available at littlegipper.com and is also on sale at Hammes Bookstore on the Notre Dame campus.
“I’m very excited about it,” Jake Keyes said. “It’s been a blast and I feel great. I really love Notre Dame football and I had a lot of fun writing the book.”
Let’s be honest. Most 10-year-old kids like goofing around with their friends, video games and TV.
Jake Keyes is not your average 10-year-old.
He was officially hooked on Fighting Irish football after attending the first of two football camps at Notre Dame. He also went to the ND-Southern Cal game last season for his 10th birthday.
Jake realized there weren’t any books on Fighting Irish football written for a younger reading audience, so he did something about it.
“He’s a pretty motivated kid,” Michael Keyes said. “No doubt about it.”
Writing any kind of book is not an easy task, and it took Jake Keyes a full year to finish the 105-page book.
“I would work on it every night and a ton over the weekend,” Jake said. “It took me a year, but it was a lot of fun and I’m really happy I was able to write the book.”
According to a story in the Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, as Jake started writing the book he discovered Notre Dame has a policy requiring that permission be obtained from everyone whose picture or illustration appears in the book.
Jake spent hours writing letters and sending emails to clear the hurdle.
“Joe Montana was the last one,” Jake told the Spokane paper. “He was really hard to get in touch with. I was worried.”
On November 3, Jake will make another trip back to South Bend for the Notre Dame-Pitt game and he’ll be signing copies of “The Little Gipper’s Welcome to Notre Dame Football.”
“We are really looking forward to it,” Michael Keyes said. “The university has just been amazing, frankly.”
So has Jake Keyes, the kid quarterback and author.
“It’s hard,” Jake said. “But I’m always up early and I do a lot of stuff in the morning. There’s not much time to be doing other stuff.”
Keyes also takes piano lessons, and he spends a lot of time on the football field as well. With any luck, one day he’ll be taking snaps for the Fighting Irish.
“That is something I think about it and something I really want to,” Keyes said. “It’s such a great academic school and the football team has a great history.”
During his three years playing football, Keyes has been the quarterback. There is no other position he’d rather be playing.
“As the quarterback, you’re the leader of the team and that’s something I really like doing,” he said. “And I like throwing the ball. I like to throw and run it.”
When he sets his mind on something, Keyes has been a rousing success. That might be a big surprise considering his age, but he has strong family support and he’s not afraid to set lofty goals.
“My message to other kids my age would be always try your hardest,” Keyes said. “Don’t ever quit and keep pushing on.”
With a late-season bye week facing Marin Catholic (CA), junior QB/WR Morgan Mahalak took the opportunity to further amplify his talents on the East coast. When I caught up with him, he was packing for a trip to North Carolina. “I’m mainly going to be in Chapel Hill to see UNC, but I’ll probably spend a day at North Carolina State as well.” The trip comes at a very busy time for Mahalak, whose Wildcats are in the top 100 in California and a standout Div. III team from the North Coast Section.
Marin Catholic QB Morgan Mahalak
Though he is not the starting QB—senior Cal commit Jared Goff holds that distinction—Mahalak has found success as part of the wide receiver rotation. “I’m glad I can be out there helping the offense and plus, I’ve got some extra game film now. Probably my best highlight as a receiver was catching a 70-yard touchdown from Jared against Miramonte to open the season. That was a big game for us against an East Bay team, and it was on television.”
In the video clip above, local sportscaster Mark Ibanez announces the play Mahalak is referring to. And when he does get snaps at quarterback, he makes them count. Against Terra Linda on Oct. 13, he threw a 70-yard touchdown of his own during a 45-6 rout.
Defensively, the Wildcats have not allowed more than 12 points in their last six games. At 8-1, they finish the regular season on Nov. 3 against Tamalpais and then head back to the playoffs. A year ago, only a two-point loss to Campolindo at the O.Co Coliseum kept Marin Catholic out of the state championship in Carson, CA.
When the season does eventually end, it’s back to the offseason grind for Mahalak. “I spent a lot of time last spring and summer working with NFA. It’s more difficult to get together during the season, but I give so much credit to Coach Will. From fundamentals to recruiting and getting my name out there, I owe it all to him.”
Those recruiting efforts from programs across the country have gained momentum. Already with interest from Pac-12 schools like Oregon, Oregon State and UCLA, Mahalak is in strong consideration at Miami (FL) and Vanderbilt with his North Carolina trip looming. “I have family all over the country, so that’s why I’m considering so many different areas. I’d be comfortable pretty much anywhere. I obviously want to find a strong football program, but academics are also very important to me.”
Over the summer, he worked out for Notre Dame and hoped for the best. “That was a strange camp. There was a case of food poisoning going around, so a lot of people were getting really sick. Luckily, I didn’t get it but things just didn’t go as planned. If it’s meant to be at Notre Dame, it’ll happen.”
For now, Mahalak takes great pride in being a top-five 2014 QB prospect from Northern California. “There’s a group of us kind of banding together. You have JaJuan Lawson (Casa Grande), Manny Wilkins (San Marin), K.J. Carta-Samuels (Bellarmine), Keller Chryst (Palo Alto) and me.” These players all are excelling at their respective schools and head the wave of juniors that will continue to dominate the Bay Area prep scene as seniors next year.
The days of splicing your best plays on film, mailing them off to college football coaches and waiting weeks or more for a response are long gone.
These days, football players use social media to instantly get their names and information out there.
Facebook, You Tube and Twitter are three popular forms of social media that help rising players get noticed by collegiate programs. Other outlets include
Digg, BallTribe, BallHyped, Gack Sports, MySpace, Tumblr, Sulia and Storify.
“I think using social media is really important because it’s the only resource I have right now to be able to get film out and whatever else I need, just to get on some coaches’ radars,” said Sean Clifford, a standout quarterback at
Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy and six-year NFA veteran. “Using social media is going to be really important for me as I move into high school.”
Along with other talented players around the country and in Canada, Clifford can post videos of his best plays and keep his statistics updated.
Many players with NFA backgrounds are learning the value of social media.
“It’s a smart way to get your name out there,” said NFA Coach Will Hewlett. “You don’t want to be posting anything controversial or anything that can get you in trouble. Be smart with social media and it can really help you in the recruiting process.”
Posting highlight plays and stats allows college coaches from around the country to get an early jump on evaluation.
Again, it is important to keep social media postings positive.
“Kids need to understand that they have to be very careful about what they do on social media,” Florida coach Will Muschamp told ESPN.
Muschamp, by the way, recently signed NFA vet Max Staver, a star senior quarterback out of Nashville, to a scholarship with the Gators.
Staver traveled to Gainesville, Fla., to throw for Muschamp and his coaching staff over the summer and received the scholarship offer.
But he used Twitter to keep college coaches updated on his progress, and Florida was just one of the schools that kept close tabs and expressed strong interest.
There are strict recruiting rules for college coaches, and that also applies to social media.
There is a limit to the number of phone calls college coaches can make to a potential football recruit, and the NCAA has banned most forms of text messaging.
During recruiting season, when coaches can make contact with recruits, the trend is sending messages via Facebook or Twitter rather than keeping in touch the old ways – phone calls and mail.
Players using social media tools and keeping themselves updated on popular message boards from schools they want to play for can keep track of other players being recruited at the same position.
NFA not only encourages players to take advantage of social media, it helps with the recruiting process.
Coach Hewlett (@WillHewlett) is constantly collecting stats and highlights on Twitter, and you can also get in the social media game at @NFAcoach. Coach JC Boice (@jcboice) is another helpful follow on Twitter.
Coach Hewlett and Boice have recruiting contacts all over the country and help spread the word on successful NFA participants.
Unless you are one of the top players in your class, it can be a challenge getting noticed by college football coaches.
Using social media helps you level that playing field and promote your skills to a wide variety of schools and outlets.
Strive for greatness.
Practice. Practice some more.
Hit the weights, and build up every muscle in the body.
Take the field and let it rip.
Follow the aforementioned steps, and you’re probably going to come off the field in good shape.
But don’t stop there.
Listen up, budding football standouts.
Listen to what Chad Case has to say.
“I think when you have an athlete that nails their nutrition and nails the supplementation, not only is the performance dramatically increased because they’re healthier and stronger and faster, but that performance is sustained.”
Chad Case knows what he’s talking about. The former collegiate linebacker and coach has shifted his focus to nutrition and supplements.
A certified Nutritionist, certified Children’s Nutritionist and CEO of Max Muscle in Nebraska, Case has brought his considerable knowledge and expertise to NFA.
As we mentioned earlier, talent, attitude and work ethic can carry you far in football. But eating right and taking the proper supplements are often overlooked.
That’s where Chad Case comes in.
“Supplements are very important and the reason is, the vast of majority of us, we’re not getting all the nutrients we need out of our daily diet,” Case said. “The way lifestyles are, everything so on the go, it’s hectic. We’re often in a position where we have to eat what’s convenient. And more and more, we’re eating processed foods, which really strips away a lot of the nutrition we need to be getting.
“I work with athletes to solve this problem. There are a lot of nutrients we’re not getting on a day-to-day basis that we need. Supplements are very, very important.”
So, what are supplements and why are they so important?
Supplements are vitamins and minerals that help make the body feel healthier and stronger.
You can take all the supplements you want, but that doesn’t mean you’ll become a better football player.
“What I think sometimes happens and gets misconstrued is people think if they take a supplement they don’t have to have good nutrition in conjunction with it,” Case said. “But obviously, the word supplement is just that – it’s in addition to. So we have to start everything with the foundation of proper nutrition. From there, we can supplement with that and it makes it extremely effective.
“In today’s day and age, as more and more research is being done in regards to supplementation, there is so much evidence and proof of how beneficial it is. The thought process that you don’t need supplements is an antique idea; it’s an old thought process that’s gone away.”
Supplements – coupled with sound nutrition – can give you a competitive edge on the football field.
But supplements can be harmful if you’re not properly educated. Fortunately for the NFA nation, Case is on the staff.
“I go all over and speak to athletes of all ages and educate them on proper nutrition and what I call safe supplementation,” Case said. “What I mean by that is the supplement industry is not regulated like the food industry. When you and I go to the grocery store and buy a can of corn like Green Giant or Delmonte corn, we don’t worry if there’s corn in the can. We know there’s corn in the can because the Food and Drug Administration regulates that.
“The supplement industry is becoming more and more regulated, but by and large it’s not. So what you’re looking for is, No. 1, the person I’m talking to, the person advising me on supplementations, what are there credentials? Are they simply a commissioned salesperson or is this a professional?
“Are they a certified nutritionist? Are they giving me the best advice possible? As for the products I’m taking, are they tested? Are they safe for sports or are they a banned substance? It’s not as if we’re taking something and putting it in our hair and the worst thing that happens is our hair falls out. That would be awful, but we’re ingesting these supplements and putting them into our body, so we have to be very, very protective of what we put in our body. I’m a parent myself so especially when we’re talking about what type of supplements our kids are potentially taking, we have to be educated.”
Getting information on supplements and proper nutrition is easy – just contact Chad Case.
“I encourage everybody in the NFA community, they can reach out to me and we can hop on the phone and go through a consultation,” Case said. “I have a lot of players who simply take pictures of supplements they’re interested in buying and send me the information over the phone. Then, I can research the product for them. My role with NFA is serving as a resource center for athletes and parents to make sure that in this very confusing, often complicated world with supplementation, their kids are taking supplements that are safe for sports; they’re not banned substances and they’re healthy and they’re age appropriate.
“On top of that, we do get into deeper nutrition as far as kids that are trying to gain weight and they struggle with nutrition components. I can help them with what they need to be eating on a day in and day out basis to get where they need to go.”
Whether it is during the season or off-season, proper nutrition and supplement usage is important.
“With proper supplementation and nutrition, you can recover from after practice and after games so throughout the season you are strong and able to perform at the highest level,” Case said. “As we look at this as a track or a path, they have a goal of playing high school varsity football or even playing college football. We know they have to develop in order to get there. By having proper nutrition and proper supplementation, I know we are maximizing their growth and development to give them the best opportunity to be the best football players they can be.”