Monthly Archives

May 2012

Tango 12

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A couple months back my Adidas Koponya match ball stopped holding air. Something went bad with the internal bladder. The ball was given to me by my parents on the backside of the South Africa Confederations Cup. It was my favorite soccer ball. The feel and design was amazing – one of a kind.

I called up Adidas to see if there was anything I could do to fix the ball. Matt helped me out. He listened to what I had to say and told me that there was nothing I could do to fix the ball, but Adidas would send me a gift card for the full amount so I could purchase another one in its place. Unfortunately, the Koponya is a limited edition and Adidas no longer makes it.

With the Euro 12 around the corner, I decided to replace the Koponya with the Tango 12. Jazzed, I went to the Adidas website to order it up, but for some reason it wasn’t available online. Come to find out, I would possibly have to wait another 3 months to get my hands on one from Adidas. So Jason (from Adidas) went to work for us and contacted the online store guys to see what could be done to get the ball back up online. A week later Jason shot me an email and told me that the ball was back up and ready to go. l went to the site and pulled the trigger. It arrived at the house a couple days ago. I can’t believe how nice this ball is. Close to perfect.

Big thanx to Adidas, Jason & Matt. You guys rock!

Playing for Something Bigger

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This weekend my U14 Lakeshore Premier Soccer team is playing in the Novi Jags Tournament in eastern Michigan. It’s going to be a blast. When we play, we always play to win, but this time our team is playing for something a little bit bigger. We’re playing for kids in Japan who lost everything in the tsunami last year.

Our goal is raise enough money to give 100 kids, who currently live in the Tsunami Zone, new, quality soccer balls. Most of these kids have lost their homes and everything they own. Some of them have even lost family members. Approximately 19,000 people died from the catastrophe. I know from experience, that it would be huge for many of these kids to receive a new soccer ball when everything else is lost.

We’re wearing the new Charity Ball special edition “all red” kit. Hopefully it will be a big hit and creates some hype around the cause! Our team will also be spreading the word during the tourney and telling people what Charity Ball is all about. If you would like to sponsor our team or donate a soccer ball, you can give online here.


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For the last 10 months I have been training with Coach, Brent Kowalski from Grand Haven, MI. Brent is an awesome coach. He has a perfect mind for the game and has the right amount of intensity. Every time my team steps on the pitch, he tells us to “play with heart ” no matter what. It took me a little while realize what Coach Brent really meant, when he said play with “heart” but I soon figured it out.

As a teenager, one of his best friends was a guy by the name of Mike Herman. Brent and Mike played soccer together in early high school. They were always challenging themselves and the rest of the team to step on the field and play with heart. In other words – put 100% of your passion and effort into your play – and that’s what Mike did. At age 15, Mike was in a fatal car accident and passed away. His heart and legacy continues to lives on through Brent, and us- if we let it.

Here is what playing with “heart” means to me:

  • It means to play with passion
  • It means to give your best on every pass, attack, tackle, header or kick
  • It means to use your head and think about what’s tactically best for you and your team
  • It means to go hard and play with physicality
  • It means to apply yourself and the strategic things you’ve learned about the game
  • It means to play for something bigger then yourself


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We’re in the process of shooting a new promo video for Charity Ball. This little video follows a Jabulani soccer ball as it leaves the US, travels to Paris, on to South Africa and ultimately into the hands of kid who lives in a shanty town. It should be pretty cool when it’s finished. So while we were in Chicago last week, (our Lakeshore team was playing in a Nike Tournament) it just made sense to grab a few shots for the vid a few slices of deep-dish pizza from Genos East. Got lotsa luv for the Windy City. -E

Off to Africa

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Hope College student, Sam Tzou (Holland, Michigan) stopped by the office today and picked up 26 new soccer balls to take with him to Africa. He and some friends will be hand-delivering the balls to kids in Livingston, Zambia over the next few weeks.

Sam, thanks for helping us make it possible for kids in Zamibia to have ball!