I've always been involved in the Boys and Girls Club. It's played a major role in who I've become. I grew up in a single-parent home and my mom worked. My coaches there were like my fathers. That was the first place I learned to take my hat off when I came into a room, and which is the salad fork and which is the dinner fork, and things like that. They have all kinds of great programs that helped me learn how to fit in wherever I went.
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I've listened to “The Sports Animal” in the mornings, but one of the things they teach you in Head Coaching 101 is not to listen to the radio shows. All the things they say about you can play tricks on your mind. I'll have to stop listening to it once the season starts. That's when I'll have my books on tape on when I drive to work.
How can a quality college football program improve life in Albuquerque?
It brings people together and it brings tremendous energy and hope. With the economy the way it is, it can take people's minds off their problems for a Saturday.
You’re from Washington, D.C. What's your take on Albuquerque so far?
This is probably the best-kept secret in the country. This is the perfect climate, and it's a beautiful city. Every day, I see the mountains coming up on me when I go to work. I've come to like the Nob Hill area near campus. It's a great place to have lunch and see all the diversity.
Do you stress the importance of academics to your players?
Yes. They found that out very quickly. With my background being the first person in my family to get a college degree, I understand what that degree has done for me. When it's all said and done, I don't want to be judged on the wins and losses, I want to make sure I did right by the players under me.