Offthemag: Welcome to OFFiCial the Magazine Nat. Tell us a little about yourself…
I’m a former athlete and now a youth coach and mentor to a few athletes in the area. I played football, basketball and baseball at Ponax before I went to the Virginia Military Institute on a football scholarship. At VMI I was a three year starter. Once injuries ended my playing career I became a coach while finishing up the requirements for my degree. That’s where I developed my passion for coaching and working with athletes in general.
My dad is and always has been my role model. I never really looked at athletes and entertainers as role models because to me you never get to see what those guys are really like. Everything they do for the most part is a business move. I knew exactly who my father was as a man. I remember him working 10 hour days and 7 days a week my whole childhood. He did all that and never once complained or missed a game my entire playing career. Well… he did miss one middle school football game because his truck broke down on the way there. Ironically, he drives a tow truck now! And I’m not talking one team. I played on multiple teams year round. He was always there supporting whatever I did. I want to be the same way for my kids one day.
Offthemag: What does sports mean to you?
Sports to me is life. I don’t mean that as in “Sports or Die”. I mean it as it’s a way for you to learn all the lessons and characteristics you need to be successful and not count against you because you made a mistake. At the end of the day it’s just a game, but to me the parallels are infinite. You have to out work your competitors! You have to be passionate about what you do! You have to be accountable for your mistakes because they effect those around you! I could go on all day, but we don’t have time for all that.
Offthemag: What made you start Action Enterprises?
After I graduated from VMI I came home and began working and coaching in the area. I noticed that a lot of these athletes didn’t know about the opportunities that were out there for them. They just didn’t appreciate the position that their athletic ability had put them in. I couldn’t really blame the athletes because no one was taking responsibility for informing them of what’s out there. There were plenty of guys I played with that were better athletes than me, but never made it to the next level. There is nothing worse to me than seeing talent wasted! It’s one thing if you don’t want it, but you at least need to know it’s possible through your actions.
Offthemag: How is it being both a coach of an AAU team and of the Massaponnax High School?
It’s time consuming. Like you mentioned, I coach football and basketball at Ponax plus I have 3 teams under my AAU Basketball program, TEAM ACTION. That means I have some form of a practice or game everyday of the week. All while maintaining a full time job which pays the bills. Don’t get me wrong though, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love what I do. It’s gratifying watching these kids grow into young men right before my eyes. Some of the kids that play football and basketball at Ponax I see literally everyday of the week. That makes for a special bond. We see each other at our best and worse of times. I’ll do anything to help my kids.
Offthemag: Could you shed some light on what you’re trying to do with Action Enterprises?
With Action Enterprises I’m trying to educate. We show athletes the “process” and then showcase their “progress”. We work with the athlete as a whole. We mentor, we provide tutoring if needed, we give on the field training and teach the importance of community involvement.
Offthemag: Where do you see Action Enterprises in the next 5 years?
In 5 years… I see us having a physical location where people can come to see our athletes train. I see us having all of the best athletes from the Fredericksburg Area training together and competing against each other. We will continue to host events in the community and continue to help every athlete we work with until we get there whether it’s in the next 5 years or not.
Offthemag: Do you have any upcoming events to look out for?
Team Action 17, 16 & 10 will be competing in tournaments throughout the summer. We will be hosting a free speed camp in June for along with a flag football showcase. The 2nd annual Kickball Family Fun Day. We also have plans to host a bowl-a-thon. Just keep your eyes and ears open for the details on those as well as other events.
Offthemag: How can our readers reach you?
You can follow me personally on twitter @natjack22. You can keep up with Team Action on facebook.com/teamactionaau and for everything Action Enterprises follow us on twitter @TheActionEnt and visit www.theactionenterprises.com. Also if you know of any athletes that want help, contact me at njackson@theactionenterprises.
Offthemag:Any last words for those reading this article?
“Success is when opportunity and preparation meet”. So make sure you are prepared when your opportunity comes.
Offthemag: What’s one word to describe you?