How Notre Dame football players are staying mentally fit this season

Published: Oct. 17, 2020 at 2:11 PM EDT
Email this link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - It’s no secret things are very different this season and the term ‘face mask’ means something new.

"I can’t do anything about this virus,” said linebacker Drew White. “That stuff is out of my control. So really, my mindset is what can I control. What can I do to put myself in the best position for the team and for my future to win a national championship.”

With so much uncertainty surrounding the college football season, players are doing their best to stay focused on what they can control.

“I would say most of it is being one team, being collective as a team in our mindset of what we want to accomplish this season,” said kicker Jonathon Doerer.

“The brain is not a muscle in the scientific sense, but it functions like a muscle in that it grows and gets stronger,” said Dr. Amber Selking, a mental performance coach for the Notre Dame football team. “We’ve been saying stay in the present.”

“What you do ahead of difficult situations will help you navigate when difficult situations arise,” Dr. Selking said. “I believe in the last few years we’ve done a great job.”

Like many of us, the players have been staying connected with loved ones over zoom calls and are taking it one day at a time.

“If you look at this as the potential last day, it could create fear or gratitude and those are different physiological reactions in our body and mind,” Dr. Selking said. “It’s given our young men a chance to really understand what that means ‘one day at a time’.”

“Every day, making that choice to treat it as if it’s your last, because with this COVID situation, you never know what comes next,” defensive end and captain Daelin Hayes said. “I think that it gave guys the extra hunger, an extra boost to give it everything you have with nothing being set in stone.”

Copyright 2020 WNDU. All rights reserved.