Shannon began playing football from a very young age. He continued playing through high school, where he lettered in varsity football during his freshman year as a full back and linebacker.
After his high school playing days were over and college opportunities were minimal, Shannon decided to join the Marine Corps. Upon discharge in 2002, he returned home to Tennessee to get his undergraduate degree where began volunteering with a college football team. There, he gained valuable experience in coaching a position, required drills for that position, player development and game day management.
After getting his degree, Shannon enlisted for a second tour with the Marine Corps, injuring his lower back during preparation for a combat deployment for Afghanistan. Shannon uses his experience as a troop leader in the Marine Corps and applies it to coaching football.
What is your coaching philosophy?
I believe sports are a wonderful tool that teaches valuable lessons which will not only prepare an individual for the competitive games associated with their respective sport but also the game called “Life”. I believe any person can be successful in whatever endeavor they set out on with plenty of heart, hard work, dedication, and commitment. That is where coaches come into play. We are not just coaches, but also teachers and mentors. I truly believe that in order to get the best out of an athlete, a coach must get to know the athlete in order to know what truly motivates them. A coach must show that they are sincere, genuine, and truly care about the well-being as well as the development of the athlete.
How did you decide to become a private coach?
I just started private coaching this year. One of my mentors owns his own private coaching business and I turned to him for advice on pursuing my interest in coaching, and he told me to jump into private coaching. Being a disabled military veteran, it has been a bit difficult for me to break into the coaching world and connect and network with coaches. Private coaching provides a different door into the coaching world.
What can a client expect from private lessons with you?
A client can expect 100% from me every time. I have a full commitment to their improvement and I am dedicated to excellence 24/7. I translate my experience from being a troop leader into coaching. I don’t ask them to do anything that I haven’t done or wouldn’t do. I spend hours on end researching drills, fundamentals, and techniques associated with football along with reading coaching books in order to improve myself as a coach which in turn allows me to give my client the best training session possible.
Describe what a typical session with you is like.
A typical session depends on the client, their skills, and their position. Typically a session starts with stretching and basic grass drills, which help the client get ready to do the more demanding drills I have planned. Next is typically footwork and agility training. From there, we get into fundamental and technique work for their respective positions. Towards the end of a session we will turn to conditioning and speed training, where I like to utilize exercises learned during my time as a Marine.
What is your coaching style?
I am a very driven, intense, and focused coach, yet very professional. When I hit the field with a player, I am committed to helping that athlete become the very best they can be in their respective sport. I want an athlete that will give me 110 percent every time out, will dig deep when they feel they have nothing left in the tank, and dedicate themselves to going beyond their expectations. There will not be a coach out there that will spend as much time preparing for a session as me. I believe I am a player’s coach in the fact that I truly try to get to know them on a personal level which helps me know what truly motivates and drives them.
Who is your favorite coach and why?
The first is Vince Lombardi- He was very intense and driven, making players be the best they could be. He believed in the fundamentals and techniques of every position and was committed to excellence in all phases of football.
Next is Lou Holtz – Coach Holtz was a master motivator and had a very unique way of firing players up. He was genuine and sincere and truly cared about his players.
Jon Gruden – He eats, breathes, and sleeps football. He tells athletes exactly what they need to know and doesn’t sugarcoat things.
Finally, John Wooden – He was a coach that never had to raise his voice or scream yet got his point across and players respected him like a father figure. He was genuine and truly cared about each of his players.
What do you enjoy most about coaching?
I enjoy the competitiveness that football and coaching provide. Competing against other coaches to give your players the tools that will allow them to go out and compete and win! I enjoy the camaraderie among coaches.
I also really enjoy coaching and mentoring athletes. They come to respect you and you get to see them develop as a player and a person. To gain the respect and trust of an athlete to the point where they look to you for guidance is a really neat feeling. There is nothing more rewarding than making a difference in a young athlete’s life.
What is your favorite sports movie? Why?
Rudy or The Rookie- I love both of them! Rudy because it tells the story of a young man who proved everyone wrong and wouldn’t take no for an answer. He proved that it’s not necessarily about the level of ability, but rather that it’s about the heart of the person and their determination to push beyond their limits.
I like The Rookie because it proved that it’s never too late to accomplish your goals. Both movies are very inspirational and have a motivational message: if you work hard, always believe, and never lose faith, then anything is possible!
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