Entry #5: Coach Mo'
Coach Allen Mogridge -- Coach Mo -- was my primary recruiter and will be my position coach at North Carolina. Coach Mo is outgoing, he’s goofy, he tells the truth all the time. He’s a more mature and upbeat version of me. He’s not afraid to make friends. He’s not afraid to tell you how it is.
We had a conversation the other day and he was straight forward with me. He said “Okay, this is what’s going on. Here it goes. We’re about to start getting into the playbook and start breaking this thing down.” I was like “I’m ready.” He’s going to send the playbook and he’s going to start going over it with me over the phone.
I’d say 85-percent of why I picked North Carolina was because of Coach Mo. I say 85-percent not because 85 is my number, but because 15-percent I would give to my parents because UNC is close to my mom and she’s been there to support me the whole way. And 85-percent because I felt like Coach Mo was there the whole time and he saw something no other coach saw yet. Other coaches jumped in just to jump in. Coach Mo offered before I played a down of high school football – and that didn’t matter to him.
It’s pretty cool that my primary recruiter will be my position coach. We talk about when I arrive, the foundation for when I get there. I told him, “Look, I’m really not down for a coach that’s happy now and then switches up later.” He said, “You have nothing to worry about. I don’t change the way I am. I’m not a phony coach.”
The first time I met him was at UNC’s camp. We got along because our personalities match. We were laughing because I was messing up the defenders and he was saying, “Oh, man, did you just do that to him?” We were just having a good time. We immediately connected on all cylinders.
My favorite Coach Mo story was when he came to my house to visit one time. He came to my school first and said, “I’m going to come spend the whole afternoon with you.” He came and we chilled at my school. It was last block of the day so we were about to leave. Coach Mo goes, “You’re not driving home? I can’t drive you in my car – it’s against the rules.” I said, “It’s all good. You drive and meet me at my house, and I’ll walk.” He says, “You know what? I’ll walk with you.” I said, “Okay, Coach Mo, on the way to my house there are these homeless dudes. And one time my brother and I got chased by one.” Coach Mo said, “If I see them, I’ll tell them you said ‘What’s up’ and we’ll just kick it and maybe we’ll have a cup of coffee.’”
So he walked me to my house. He said hello to my older brother and my niece and nephew. And then he left and walked back to his car that was at the school. He called me along the way when he got to the spot I told him the chase occurred. He said, “By the way, I saw your friend. He was hilarious and he doesn’t like coffee.”