“Have you prepared yourself for football through hard work, training, study and dedicated effort? How about off the field, beyond your football playing days … are you ready for a career and life?
The Oregon State University football program’s goal is that its successful student-athletes live by those words, but it’s not just about preparing for the next practice or game, it’s more importantly about preparing for life.
Beyond Football is a new initiative the Beaver football program began in 2013. The program is guided by its director and OSU football letterman Scott Spiegelberg and the team’s Chief of Staff/Director of Player Development Jay Locey, also a Beaver football letterman. The pioneering venture provides transformational personal and professional experiences that create productive leaders for life.
“I have the utmost respect for Coach (Mike) Riley and his vision for student-athletes at Oregon State,” Spiegelberg said. “There is no question he aspires to win games and championships, but he also is very connected to what his student-athletes have planned for their futures outside of the game and how they mature into solid citizens and community leaders.”
The vision of the program is to identify unique interests and skills of the student-athletes, connect them to leaders, innovators and business professionals that may have otherwise been not accessible, provide real world experiences, create meaningful opportunities for businesses to engage and invest in OSU Athletics, and to provide individuals who will be leaders in the workforce and life.
“This is not something for just seniors or upperclassmen in the program,” Locey said “We have designed this so any young man in the program will be exposed to what we aspire Beaver student-athletes to be tomorrow, five years from now, 10 years from now – really – for their whole lives.”
Beyond Football began as a brainchild of anonymous donor and Coach Riley in 2013. The donor, a very successful businessman and OSU graduate, has helped fund the program.
“It’s critical that we think long term for our student-athletes and this is one way to ensure that opportunities exist to what already is available at Oregon State University,” Riley said. “We have had great participation from within our program and I’m confident it will pay dividends for years to come and make Beaver Nation proud that today’s student-athletes will be tomorrow’s business and community leaders.”
Several football student-athletes recently traveled with Spiegelberg and Locey to the Bay Area where they met professionals from Google, Jamba Juice, Chevron, Heritage Paper and the Pac-12 Networks. They also had a networking event with former OSU football players.
Senior fullback Tyler Anderson, a Bay Area native and New Media communication major, was one of the Beavers to visit the corporate world and had high praise for the event.
“I will recommend Beyond Football to all of my teammates, and sooner than later really,” Anderson said. “It’s important to create connections and chart a path for your life. “
The odds of having a professional football career following college are long; that’s where the Beavers’ Beyond Football enters the picture.
‘As a senior, I’m looking beyond football to the next chapter in my life,” Anderson said. “The odds of playing at the next level are long and life as a football player ends for everyone at some point.”
Ultimately, Oregon State is striving to be recognized nationally as a trendsetter for compelling leadership programs that enhance the ability to recruit and retain elite student-athletes. If you would like to help in the cause please contact Our Beaver Nation by following this link or calling 541-737-2370.