October 27, 2016
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Mickey Marotti is in his third season as the assistant athletic director for football sports performance at Ohio State and his 28th season as a coach. He is the person Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer trusts in the critical area of strength and conditioning training and overseeing sports performance, and he is an individual Meyer has worked with or hired four times.
"There are times in the year when the strength staff has more contact with the team than the coaching staff," Meyer said, "and I have complete trust in Mickey Marotti's abilities to prepare our student-athletes to be the strongest, fastest and mentally toughest football players they can be."
Marotti, called a "master" of motivation and mental preparation by Meyer, is indeed that: he has coached three teams now that have won national championships: the 2006 and 2008 Florida Gators and the 2014 Ohio State Buckeyes.
His work with the Buckeyes last season earned him American Football Monthly's FBS Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year award.
From there he went on to the University of Cincinnati, where he spent seven seasons (1990-97) as head strength and conditioning coach for UC's 20-sport program. He also worked in the areas of diet analysis and planning and assisted in student-athlete rehabilitation from injuries.
Midway through Meyer's five-year run as an assistant coach at Notre Dame, Marotti had the opportunity to work with him again when he was named Notre Dame's director of strength and conditioning in 1998. He spent seven seasons in South Bend, coordinating all aspects of the strength and conditioning program for the 26-sport department, including developing a year-round program for the football team, coordinating camps, clinics and special events, and developing policies and regulations.
Marotti was then one of Meyer's first hires when he took over as head coach of Florida in early 2005. And from 2005-11 Marotti oversaw the complete strength and conditioning programs for all of Florida's intercollegiate sports. He also served as the director of the football athletic performance team.
Unique in the fact he is one of approximately100 strength trainers to hold a Master of Strength and Conditioning - the highest honor in his profession - certification, Marotti is also atypical in the things he has his players do that all lead to developing a mental and physical edge.
Marotti's talents helped Florida develop 22 All-Americans and eight first-round NFL draft choices during his seven years in Gainesville. And there is no disputing the team accomplishments the Gators achieved: two national championships, two Southeastern Conference championships and three 13-win seasons.
The well-conditioned and mentally tough Ohio State Buckeyes have been one of the best teams in the nation over the past two seasons, including a school-record 24-game winning streak and only the sixth undefeated season in school history in 2012 (12-0). Four Buckeyes have been named first-team All-American during this time, including cornerback Bradley Roby and defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins in 2012 and linebacker Ryan Shazier and offensive tackle Jack Mewhort this past season. Additionally, Buckeyes were named the Big Ten Conference's Defensive Player of the Year (John Simon in 2012) and Offensive Player of the Year (Braxton Miller in 2012 and 2013), quarterback of the Year (Miller in 2012 and 2013), Running Back of the Year (Carlos Hyde in 2013) and Chicago Tribune MVP (Miller in 2012 and 2013).
A native of Ambridge, Pa., Marotti was a four-year letterwinner as a fullback for West Liberty (W.Va.) University, serving as a team tri-captain in 1986 and winning first team NAIA All-Academic honors in 1987. He is a 1987 graduate of West Liberty with a degree in exercise physiology.
Marotti and his wife, the former Susan Laffey, have a son, Mitchell, and a daughter, Maddie.
In this episode we discuss:
His journey into the S&C field.
Biggest mistake he has made in S&C and how he learned from it.
Why college over the pro's.
How to balance your family life with your professional life.
How he gives his coaches autonomy within the program.
Recommendations he has for coaches that have to manage staffs.
How he has integrated himself with the Football staff and Administration.
How he has handled success and players leaving early.
The best piece of coaching advice he has received.
His favorite quote, Book/App/Website recommendation