Ken Mastrole joined the Upper Hand pod to talk about his work at Mastrole Quarterback Academy. Coach Mastrole is the head Quarterback Coach and Consultant at Mastrole Quarterback Academy. The MQA team consists of former NFL players and coaches who bring cutting edge science and mental training to the forefront of quarterback development from youth through the professional levels.
You can read an overview of the interview with Ken Mastrole, listen or watch the podcast below for the full interview.
Q: How are you currently utilizing sports tech in your business?
A: I’ve noticed that recently the past 5 years it has really taken off. There are a lot of great quarterback coaches out there but within any industry, there are a lot of people out that just see it as a quick dollar, you can go and set up cones and get a couple kids and put them through drills because there are a lot of people that are not self-motivated. That don’t know how to go out and do this stuff. Kind of what I have done and we have done, I’ve partnered with another coach out of the Boston area name Gardy O’Flynn. He comes from the school where he coaches and played with a very high well-respected kind of mechanics guru named name Tom House out of California. He is worked with a number of quarterbacks throughout the years. Notably some of the best in the game. So what we have done is taken and derived through 3D motion analysis and having the opportunity to use the Micheli Sports Injury Prevention out of Boston. So what we are doing is kind of taking it a step further and using implements, which are weights and bands and we’re understanding better how athletes function. Whether there is function strength problems and breakdowns that are all related to the throw. And I have connected with the top sports psychologist “…” and I think I have taken those 2 and taken to a whole other level in terms of to really understanding why the athletes break down, whether its a certain type of throwing motion. You know we are just kind of adding that 3D science with experience NFL, College, and High School.
Q. How do you think the college recruiting landscape has changed?
A. Ah, It’s crazy, because it’s such a … a billion-dollar business. There is so much now where like anyone can get apart and a piece in this whole game. So we have actually formed a recruiting consulting side, so there are a big number of companies that really work on massive numbers and they have covered a lot by in terms of trying to say they are going to help kids recruited. Where we have seen kind of a niche in the market to say hey I have built such a great relationship with a lot of college coaches and am considered an expert in the industry where you spent so much time evaluating quarterbacks and you are not biased to guys that you are working with. So what I have seen is really trying to be honest and upfront with a lot of parents, I am mean there is so many, I think that just misled parent from what we find and at the end of the day you see a lot of the transfers and you see a lot of the parents that waste a lot of money and terms of spinning their wheels, going to camps, you know its at fault for both sides I think that a lot of the times that some colleges tend to lead players on to make them think they are recruitable athletes and have them come to camps when there is really no interest in them at all and they are just trying to fill the slots. So it’s really I think it’s kind of every day we talk, we discuss, we have meetings, probably 4 days a week we will call on the phone or we are talking, my business partner and the whole recruiting consulting it just changes with so many different variables to it, but it is what keeps it so interesting and keeps us on your toes.
How do you deal with parent expectations?
I think I just mentally categorize certain parents into certain kind of like departments.”…”First thing is, and what I have always been taught, it’s all about customer service. Obviously, you have got to listen, you have to be an ear to bend on a lot of time. I get that a lot in this business, I mean the phone minutes are incredible that you are listening to all of the clients. The 2nd thing is that you have to be upfront and honest with them it’s at the end of the day, I have taken the role, it’s not about the money, it’s about telling them and understanding because I think they will respect you more. And that always the way, when you are doing business by word of mouth if I get a parent that has a high expectation, I do it in a way that isn’t going to damage an ego or make the kids feel less. But what you try to do is paint the realist picture.
Q. What are you thoughts on multi sport athletes?
A. I think you have to play multiple sports because of its cross-training, your developing and part of what we have done with the science side. Kids today aren’t playing backyard football they are playing video games more often than going out and actively playing in the yard and climbing a tree, pick up things and doing certain other activities. And so when you are training, I like to look at and I tell parents all the time and if you are the 6th man on a 5 man rotation basketball team, how do you react as opposed to being the quarterback of the team, you’re the leader you are put in the leadership position but if you are the guy that maybe pitching and you’re pitching every 3rd day, I think it helps to mold you mentally not only from the sports specific and kind of like physically side but also from the mental side because you are learning how to handle different situations. You are seeing just the experience side, I think is so important and the competitive side and it helps you be competitive because a lot of the kids out there today are put out there in situations in a vacuum and they are training and its not intense competition, they are not meeting different kids they are not involved in different sports so trainers a lot of times will tell them, great job great job great job keep working, but they don’t give them the truth in life and try to get them better. So I am a big believer in you gotta play different sports, and you got to experience it. And when you get closer maybe your junior or senior year and want to specialize in football or basketball or baseball or whatever sport then I think that’s okay. Because when you get to college you’re going to have to that most likely. But I think for the most part when you are growing up, do multiple things because you are trying to develop a passion for something.