Like oil and water, it was once believed that sport facilities and environmentally friendly regulations just don’t mix. With all the water, fertilizer, and energy spent on upkeep, it seemed near impossible to limit unrecycled waste. But one brand made a commitment to fight that stereotype and is already making promising strides in the fight against unrecycled waste in sports.
Early this year, adidas announced it was opening the brand’s first sustainable football field, made with Parley Ocean Plastic, at Miami Edison Senior High School in Miami, FL.
Parley Ocean Plastic is created from upcycled plastic waste, which is intercepted and collected from remote islands, beaches, coastal communities, and shorelines to prevent it from polluting our oceans. adidas wants that plastic to be reused and they announced that approximately 1.8 million recycled plastic bottles were utilized to help create the field that will serve not only Edison High, but the wider Liberty City community.
“We believe that, through sport, we have the power to change lives, and this field is a demonstration of our taking action on that belief,” said Cameron Collins, Director of Football, adidas North America. “(It’s) more than a place for these young athletes to play, it’s a reminder of our collective responsibility to end plastic waste.”
The multipurpose field will be officially unveiled with a celebratory 7-on-7 football tournament for high school athletes, who will also get the opportunity to debut the environmentally friendly adidas Adizero x Parley cleats, made with Parley Ocean Plastic.
Along with introducing new, eco-friendly products, adidas has pledged to continue to be a driving force in the fight against ending plastic waste. Here is what the brand plans to roll out over the next decade plus:
2020: more than 50 percent of all the polyester adidas uses in products will be recycled.
2021: adidas will work with key US sports partners (MLS, NHL, USA Volleyball, and the Power 5 NCAA football programs) to transition to more sustainable uniforms.
2024: adidas will use only recycled polyester in all adidas products across the business – aided by the introduction of PRIMEBLUE and PRIMEGREEN performance fabrics where 100% of the polyester used is recycled.
2030: adidas will reduce the company’s carbon footprint by 30 percent (as compared to 2017) as part of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.
2050: achieve climate neutrality. In Germany, the company already sources almost all its electricity from renewable sources.
“Since 1998, we’ve been developing and introducing innovations to end plastic waste,” said James Carnes, VP Brand Strategy. “Our commitment to eliminate the use of virgin polyester in our products by 2024 helps us get one step closer to being a more circular company.”
Leading up to the annual draft, football prospects everywhere are dealing with a unique pre-draft process that we’ve never seen before. Athletes are taking to social media to promote their skill sets and teams around the league will rely on these Instagram workouts to see who is staying in shape and who’s not. This makes life a bit tougher for lesser-known draft hopefuls, so today we’re highlighting five possible sleeper picks that could be undervalued in this year’s draft, but have the potential to make an immediate impact for their future teams on the field.
Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor
In just about any other draft, Mims wouldn’t be considered a sleeper because of his experience (three-year starter at Baylor), size (6’3”, 207 lbs), and athleticism (4.38 40-yard dash, 6.66 3-cone drill). However, this year’s wide receiver class is loaded with talent such as CeeDee Lamb, Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs, and many others, meaning Mims could easily fall to the early second round and become a steal for one lucky team. Overall, Mims boasts insane straight-line speed and demonstrates the ability to go up and get the ball when needed. He’s in the perfect scenario to be first-round talent who gets overlooked during the draft process and break out immediately once he enters the league.
Logan Wilson, LB, Wyoming
Playing for an undervalued program at Wyoming, Logan Wilson will probably fly under the radar for most teams picking in the first couple rounds. But what the average eye didn’t see during his four years in college is that Wilson is an elite-level tackler with unteachable intangibles that could be a huge help for any team looking for consistent, solid production from down to down. The three-year captain might not have the level of output in the pros because of his lack of athleticism to cover pro-caliber receivers and tight ends, but, if he’s still available in the later rounds, he shouldn’t be overlooked.
K.J. Hill, WR, Ohio State
Another late-round wide receiver steal to look at is K.J. Hill out of Ohio State. He predominantly played slot receiver in his last two years in college but made his presence known in almost every single game. Even after having three different starting quarterbacks in his last three years, Hill ended up setting the school record in catches (21), breaking David Boston’s 21-year-old mark. Hill won’t overpower at the pro level, however, he does posses all the traits to continue his slot dominance with a professional team. As stated before, this is an extremely deep wideout class, so if a team can scoop up Hill in the fourth or fifth round, they could be landing themselves a longtime slot starter.
Jalen Hurts, QB, Oklahoma
Hurts isn’t your traditional sleeper pick, since everyone and anyone who’s watched college football knows his name. After playing in the National Championship at Alabama, Hurts transferred to Oklahoma and set the college world ablaze by compiling 3,851 passing yards and 1,298 rushing yards in his lone year as the starter there. Questions continue to pop up about his passing skill set and questionable decision-making, especially at the next level where he’ll face more athletic defenders. Still, Hurts has the potential to be a dangerous, dual-threat option with a low-risk, high-reward pick after the top-tier quarterbacks are off the board.
Troy Dye, LB, Oregon
As a four-year starter for Oregon, Dye will undoubtedly bring his experience and his knowledge of the game to the next level. He was originally a safety recruit out of high school and uses his speed and excellent athleticism to predict and plug up holes in the run game. Scouts have noted his lack of size at the linebacker position and injury history as potential concerns, but if Dye plays with as much ferocity as he did in his four years at Oregon, he’ll definitely be a nice hybrid plugin to any scheme at the professional level.
Steven Lo is the Offensive Coordinator, Quarterback Coach, and Director of Strength and Conditioning of the 2019 National Championship football team at St. John Bosco High School. Coach Lo shared with us his top tips for a player’s successful recovery after practices and game days.
NUTRITION is key leading up to any intense training. Carbohydrates provide energy; protein prevents muscle breakdown. You’ll also want to eat after your workout to replace what you lost – protein to repair muscles, carbohydrates and fruits to replace muscle glycogen (which supplies energy for your next workout or competition).
HYDRATION, both during and after competition, replaces fluids. This is vital in order to avoid dehydration and flush waste products out of your system.
MOVEMENT is medicine. After the rough part of the day is over, don’t forget to cool down. And the next day, no matter how sore you feel, you’ll want to get the blood flowing with some easy exercises to help the repair process.
ACTIVE RECOVERY is crucial when it comes to recovering from a tough training session. Start with a dynamic warm up, walking, swimming, or light running. Also include some flexibility work, like yoga.
SLEEP is the only time your body can truly rebuild and recover microtears in muscles so it’s important to get between seven and nine hours of sleep per night.
Find top of the line training gear from all your favorite brands at eastbay.com.
There’s no question that football is evolving. Rules of the game are changing, players are getting faster and stronger, and schemes are becoming more advanced. In an era where everything is tipped in favor of the offense and speed is a coveted trait, you need a cleat that’ll perform beyond the standard and help you reach new heights.
Introducing the Nike Vapor Edge 360 football cleat, engineered for speed and agility. Following up the Vapor Untouchable from 2019, the newest edition of Nike’s Vapor line was inspired and designed using feedback from actual professional football players. The Vapor Edge series utilizes a secure, 360-degree Flyknit upper that’s reinforced by a durable NIKESKIN overlay. This cleat also features a stylish and practical ghost lacing system for faster lacing and minimal distractions on the field. With multidirectional movement in mind, Nike also widened the distance between studs on the outsole to help with quick cuts and explosive traction upon takeoff.
In the small town of Woodinville, Washington, a high school football team is building something special.
The Woodinville Falcons are more than just your traditional group of jocks ready to deliver big hits on Friday night. They’re a community, a family, and a brotherhood — building each other up and molding themselves into honorable young men.
“Our football team is a family environment,” Falcons’ head coach Wayne Maxwell said. “The guys know we trust them and they trust us. We show that love for each other and that’s something pretty special and unique.”
This attitude all starts with the Falcon Core Principles, something Coach Maxwell and his team work tirelessly to instill in every single kid that passes through the Woodinville football program.
“The Falcon Core Principles are the foundation of this program,” said Maxwell. “Every kid is working on being the best version of themselves and their teammates are too. That’s what high school athletics is all about – growth and community.”
While other schools are solely focused with success on the field, the Falcons believe that hard work and character development off the field translates fluidly to their performance on the gridiron — and they’re right.
Under Coach Maxwell the Falcons hold a record of 120-51, won four conference championships, and appeared in the state title game twice. But some of the program’s most memorable moments don’t come from the game of football itself.
Prior to the 2015 season, the coaching staff decided to further acknowledge players in the program by awarding the player who most exemplifies the qualities of the Falcon Core Principles with the honor of wearing the number 44 jersey.
“All hard-working guys are 44 candidates, but it takes a little extra step of leadership and initiative,” said Dylan Axelson, a former Falcons player who was one of the first players selected with the 44 honor. “The guy who shows up earliest, leaves the latest, studies film, plays harder than everyone else, and is an all-around leader – that’s 44.”
As the 44 strong mantra evolved, Coach Maxwell even remembers a specific moment that made an impact on him and the rest of the coaching staff.
“During our 2017 playoff run, our players came out of the tunnel right before kickoff, turned to our stands and saluted the whole crowd with 44s,” said Maxwell. “They wanted to acknowledge and thank our Falcon Family and community, and it was pretty special. Our philosophy is to empower our players to do things like that without being told and no one told them to do that, so it was really cool and I was very proud.”
Davante Adams grew up like many other kids – going to school, playing with friends, and attending the Boys and Girls Club. In his free time, Adams’ parents encouraged him to pick up sports in order to keep busy and stay out of trouble. So, Adams dedicated himself to improving his athletic skills, and his hard work began to pay off. During his senior year of high school, Adams helped lead his team to the CIF National Championship, but fame was never his end goal. Adams’ motivation for success was more selfless: he simply wanted to give back.
“I didn’t want to be famous. I wanted to be successful,” Adams said. “I wanted to do everything I could to help my family out and give mom and dad everything they gave to me.”
Now, going into his sixth season as wide receiver for Green Bay, Adams realizes that his potential to give back reaches further than just his family. Through his words and actions, he can impact the next generation of athletes.
“The kids running around the Boys and Girls Club are me,” Adams said. “It’s important to invest in kids because setting a good example for them will shape the future and put us all in good hands.”
Regardless of what grade you’re in or what sport you play, Davante Adams believes you hold the power to create a bright future, so here’s five pieces of advice he has for you:
1. Have fun playing sports but be safe.
“I play football because I love the sport and have fun playing it,” Adams said.
It’s no surprise that Adams is an advocate for youth sports because of the effect they had on his own life. Adams believes that not only do they provide a method of keeping kids active and healthy, but he says it can also benefit kids socially.
“Getting involved in sports gives kids something to do, and it helps out with relationships as they make friends,” Adams said.
Although competition is fun, Adams points out that there’s an element that needs to be taken seriously.
“The number one thing is to always be safe,” he said. “They have different levels – flag football if you don’t want to worry about being tackled, or if you want to play tackle football, that could be fun too. Either way, wearing a mouthpiece is big. People think it’s so your teeth don’t crack, but it also helps prevents concussions if you get hit.”
2. Your passions may change, and that’s okay.
One thing that makes Adams a unique football player is
that he didn’t start playing football until 11th grade. His first
love was basketball. He began dribbling at the age of five and kept playing
through high school, lettering all four years.
“Growing up, some of my biggest influences were AI and
Deron Williams. I watched how they moved on the court, and I’d try to mimic
that,” Adams said. “I always had a mean crossover; I just had to figure out how
to incorporate it into my releases and route running.”
No matter how much you plan, you don’t know what the future holds. Adams didn’t know that learning basketball skills as a young kid would help him become a great football player; he just followed his passions and dedicated himself to the sport. So whether you see the big picture or not, give 100%, always.
3. Listen to your parents and take school seriously.
It’s a cliché saying, but it bares truth: hindsight is
20/20. Now that he’s an adult (and a soon-to-be parent himself), Adams realizes
the importance of listening and heeding the advice that his parents gave him.
“Listen to your parents when they tell you to stay in school and take your schooling seriously. That’s the biggest thing,” Adams said. “I didn’t do that well when I started high school, and by the end, I had to catch up in order to graduate and become eligible for D1. The hardest thing in life is having to work backward. So listen to your parents, they know what they’re talking about.”
4. Dream big and work hard.
“Growing up, football was
an outlet for guys to get away and set us up for life,” Adams said.
He knew that if he worked hard to dominate the sport, he could earn a free ride to college, so that’s what he set out to do. After two years playing in high school, Adams left for Fresno State on a football scholarship, and two years after that, he was drafted by Green Bay.
You always want to set your sights on the biggest dreams possible.
Although Adams admits that returning to NorCal as a
local legend was once a dream of his, he’s still adjusting to the reality.
“Yes, I dreamed it would get to this point, but it was just a dream to begin with and now being in this position – coming back to the Boys and Girls Club, like the type I grew up going to – there are kids looking at me like the figures I looked up to when I was young. It’s surreal.”
5. Leave your own legacy.
Adams says he’s been
inspired by LeBron James and the impact he has both on and off the court, and
Adams hopes to inspire people in similar ways.
“I want to leave a legacy of greatness whether that’s in my community or the sport I play,” Adams said. “Being able to give back to my community sheds light on my character and lets kids know how important it is for them to do the same.”
It’s important for people to know how much something means to you, so I want them to know that I put everything into the game — blood, sweat and tears.
Adams’ legacy only reaches so far, but his impact on the next generation can start a chain reaction for a positive future because everybody has the potential to impact others with what they leave behind.
To shop Davante’s look head on over to eastbay.com, and to see his interview with two kids from the Boys and Girls Club, check out our video page.