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0:05 uh hi everyone uh my name is Tristan oler uh I'm a senior at car melon um I 0:11 am the current co-president of our pickall team here uh I'm studying international relations in politics uh 0:17 with minors and Chinese and computer science as well as I'm pursuing my masters currently in public policy and 0:22 management so a little bit of everything um and this is the Collegiate uh tailgate episode 2 hey guys I'm Nathan 0:28 Tang I'm currently a sophomore at be at the Honors College at ASU I'm double majoring in economics and business State 0:34 analytics uh and I'm also the president and co-founder of our social club as well as the president and founder of the 0:41 club sport which I'm sure we'll talk about more um at ASU usually at this time I say my hobby is pickall but 0:46 obviously that that comes with the job so um yeah I'm glad to be here and thanks for inviting me what's up guys uh 0:53 my name is Jake Wilson I am a junior from Birmingham Alabama I'm majoring in business management with concentrations 1:00 one in professional sales and the other in Risk Management insurance I founded Sanford pickleball team and um head of 1:08 our competitive team and yeah I mean I would copy you and say my hobes are pickle ball that's about it man yeah 1:15 that's awesome and it's so cool like I um when I was talking about doing this um I noticed that like I I really wanted 1:22 everybody from all over the the country to be doing this because it's such like a nationwide and honestly International 1:29 like I've played in Australia Australia and everybody loves it there like that's the kind of vibe you played in Australia 1:34 too yeah I played Australia's number one over the summer when I studied abroad super cool guy that's wild that's so 1:41 cool I know he was a I think another Australian Pro came out to LA a couple weeks ago um for some event or something 1:48 it's super crazy that it's all over right now I mean we have such different clubs but all love the same thing so I 1:55 wanted to just like talk about a little bit about our club structure because I know um cmu's uh uh competitive team is 2:02 a little bit different uh made up than most competitive teams we kind of just throw at anybody who's willing to play 2:07 and is good enough to play and we're just like you know what have a great time and like that's the kind of vibe we 2:13 take uh for everything so we have a competitive team about 20 people or 20 people that can play competitive um and 2:20 honestly my go-to is uh if they will have fun at the event I say go for it I 2:26 I don't necessarily want to throw myself at every event and our best players I'm not throwing them either because I think 2:32 we just want to give more people an opportunity to play competitively because it's such a great time and it'd 2:37 be awesome to know um it'd be awesome to know Nathan uh I know your school's a little bit bigger than ours so it'd be 2:42 cool to know about that yeah yeah no absolutely I think we're in a lucky situation because we have just about 2:48 100,000 students not on campus but we have 60,000 on TP so it's really easy for us to just say hey everyone we got a 2:55 pickleball Club come out on Thursdays at this time um and play with us so so we started our student org our social part 3:02 we have a Social and a club sport part as I was talking about earlier but we started that social part about a year and a half ago I think it was spring 3:09 2023 if I'm not mistaken um and right now we have just under 500 members um 3:14 about 60 to 80 sometimes more sometimes less come out to each of our weekly club 3:20 meetings we don't really call them practices we try to keep them more fun recreational open play um type meetings 3:27 and then we also just started our club sports so we're in our first of the club sport unfortunately the funding um gets 3:33 released in the fall so we missed out on the funding oh my God 3:39 yeah yeah so it's still a struggle to get our our club sport players out to tournaments um and and sometimes we have 3:46 to send second teams or third teams instead of the first teams because of a lack of funding but nevertheless it's 3:51 been a lot of fun we just started our club sport um this semester we had about 60 players try out and we took around 30 3:57 to 35 um and we practice on Mondays and Wednesdays outside of club facilities 4:03 for the club sport in terms of Courts our Courts for the Social Club are kind of they're not great to be honest we 4:11 have them lined on some local tennis courts like a block or two away from campus and we just pull out our own Nets 4:17 we bought our own Nets we put them up every Thursday um but again for 500 members that's not nearly enough and 4:22 we're trying to fund for some some off-campus courts um but in some terms of our club sport practice times we love 4:30 practicing at a facility called pick ball Kingdom next to us and and it's been great so far so we practice Mondays and Wednesdays there yeah that's awesome 4:37 that's that's a lot of pickle that organized for like so many people I'm impressed for sure no it's so much fun 4:43 though and it's gotten a great rep amongst the community so it's we love it yeah Jake how about you shoot man uh I 4:50 wish we had that many people at our school we're about 5,000 total so um shrink that down a lot but we officially 4:58 started our club in January or December whichever way you want to phrase it just right as the new 5:03 semester was turning around and it was really started by me and another girl 5:09 who I kind of stole from tennis and I play on I play ap Pro qualities and then 5:16 when I saw like oh there's money in college pickle ball not to mention a chance to represent my school I was just 5:22 like I gotta find three other people and like let's go do this thing so we came 5:27 at it from a very different perspective than most other schools I think most other schools do it the opposite way 5:33 they start with oh like we just love pickle ball let's get a social club we kind of started it from the point of 5:38 view of we want to go win and we want to go make money so that's kind of where ours started from and now we're kind of 5:44 doing it backwards where you know in Indiana we played uh ap's uh national 5:50 championships we made the elite eight we brought home bronze and um mix doubles 5:55 you know so we're trying to build like that National brand but now we come back to Stanford and we don't really have 6:01 like a club per se so we're trying to do that now on the back end and especially after ncpa um those championships where 6:08 you know we had another five overall finish we're trying to you know build towards more players because right now 6:14 our team total probably only has like six which is fine but you know for ncpa 6:22 my guy partner couldn't come because he's in law school so then I don't really have a big pull to pull from so I 6:27 got my cooworker who played tenness trained super hard for a month and he did great but you know we're in a little 6:33 bit of a different situation than someone like Nathan at Arizona State who's got 60,000 kids to just plug from 6:40 yeah no I completely get that and and on top of that too I think Tristan you 6:46 brought up a good point where it was like you try to give the problem almost with having too many people is that because we don't have the funding it's 6:52 tough to get everyone out to a tournament right so we're in that same situation as you Tristan where we want to send out other players and have them 6:58 get tournament experience so I know you guys did great at Stanford um at this L latest tournament for us since some of 7:05 our top team players couldn't make it none of our top team players played in it um so we sent out second and third 7:10 teams but it it's it's great and I love I love the fact that you can do that right now in pickleball it's not super 7:16 super competitive to the point where you need a a full-time pick a ball team but it's also it's also um it is competitive 7:24 enough to the point where you can play for money like you're saying Jake and I I love that fact and I hope we see more of that in the future 7:30 too there though dude like I mean if we what we learned from like this past weekend like those dedicated teams that 7:36 like have those solid like guys like whether it's your Utah TCH or valleys or your Virginia like those are the guys 7:43 that win week in and week out like you of course you can go and you can compete with people that you know may not have 7:48 that experience but like these teams that want to win like they're doing this like it's a real college sport and I 7:54 have mad respect for them and that's something I want to build for sure absolutely we're in the same kind of 8:00 boat except uh like there's this weird vibe we have at CMU where like we have half grad students we're about 14,000 8:06 students overall and half are grad students there's a so there's a ton of like this weird um like even if you do 8:13 play Club sport even our best club sports here that aren't pickable we'll get there we'll get there 8:18 don't worry um even our best club sports a lot of the times you'll see like not 8:23 the best teams going because uh they just can't for academics or like they're applying the schools or or whatever 8:30 um and so like what we started to do is actually start like sending people individually to compete instead of doing 8:36 these big matches because we know like we don't really stand a chance against like the NC State like what you were 8:41 mentioning Jake like that's we're not there yet and I don't I don't know if we'll ever be there but I I hope we'll 8:47 get at least more competitive um but like what we've started doing there's a ton of individual tournaments around 8:53 Pittsburgh or around like this Midwest area that we live in um and so we're just like all dve drive you like I'm not 9:00 even going to play but I'm going to drive you to that tournament because it's going to be awesome to watch you play and we show up with these like 9:05 cardboard signs and we're like yeah let's go come on um and that's that's the kind of vibe and I love to see that 9:11 because when we went to the Chicago Chicago Regional um a couple of weeks ago it was the same Vibes everybody was 9:18 there it was super hype like it was it was really really really cool um and 9:24 then like talking to y'all's points about playing um we have even a worse Court situation we literally have these 9:30 like crappy courts we have up in a hill that we have to walk 30 minutes from campus to go get and then a lot of the 9:36 time it's it's public courts so like there's no um there's no way for us to claim the courts in practice so we kind 9:42 of just have to go up like I go up at like 900 p.m. sometimes and play till 11: when the lights shut off like that's 9:47 that's the Vibes and we just got access to our gym but it's at like 8: a.m. so I don't know about you but you have to be 9:53 pretty committed to go at either one of those times to play pickle ball especially at North dude where it's cold 10:00 pictures of us playing in the snow like that's how Wild I'll stay in Alabama for that 10:06 one I feel bad for you guys cuz out here in Arizona we can play Outdoors year round we have perfect weather we can go 10:13 out to 5 million public facilities and and the the local people will let us 10:18 play with them and everything but even now we're moving towards private practices like you're saying I think 10:24 it's just it's just easier to run a private practice compared to a public practice just because in this day and 10:30 age now you need Drilling and stuff like that for the competitive players right if you're not drilling then really you don't have a competitive team and I'm 10:36 sure like Jake was saying the really DED dedicated teams I think UVA said they went out there and practiced most of the 10:42 days of the week so if you're really trying to be competitive you need that private atmosphere so we're trying to move indoors and find a bunch of Courts 10:48 but it's tough man it's even for bigger schools it's really tough to find funding it's really tough to find hours 10:54 that work for everyone and I know that's something that we're working towards as well but yeah we're out there till 11:00 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays but I 11:02 think it's just so great cuz college students can play Whenever you know and they still love it and even when it hits 11:00 p.m. we're out there with like 20 11:08 of us still playing till we get kicked off the courts ex I think almost I think it's almost easier in a way like for a 11:16 school like Sanford to like go to these bigger tournaments and stuff because like you like you were saying Nathan I 11:21 can't imagine personally running a 60 person practice or however many people 11:27 you have and also being like okay I need my top four including myself ready to go 11:33 play against you know the big dogs this weekend and you know with the goals of winning and so that's like crazy man and 11:40 I mean we're the same way as you guys like there's three crappy like old tennis courts with electric tape lines 11:46 across the street uh thankfully I work at lifetime that's where I coach so like 11:51 I just sneak my team on in there uh we get we get some good drilling there but yeah man there's there's not a lot of 11:57 money for for us pickle ball clubs just is what what I've gotten from everyone that I talked to this past weekend and weekend before yeah man I mean if you 12:04 want to win like you're practicing every day I'm on court for at least like three hours like it's just the time is 12:11 ridiculous I can't I can't imagine taking care of 60 people and trying to get tournament ready that sounds 12:17 crazy do y'all run like uh uh tournaments within your clubs like like fun little let's play a Dos kind of 12:24 thing or something like that yeah no actually I think that was one of the most fun exper experiences that I've had 12:30 with our social club we ran a social tournament at lifetime we had a couple employees at lifetime as well so they 12:36 helped us negotiate something last fall we called out the Arizona fall braw we invited GCU U OFA out to it it was so 12:43 much fun um uh admittedly we only started marketing for it like about two 12:49 weeks in advance so um so it's a little bit last second but um we we maxed out 12:54 on players they let us bring 60 we could have easily gotten 90 100 I think 50 12:59 faculty alumni parents who came out and watched and it was so much fun honestly um it was more of a social tournament 13:05 just because there was no there was no money being EV about there weren't any prizes but it was just so much fun 13:11 seeing the team culture and the the tournament culture build in and of itself during the tournament um and we 13:17 learned so much and we're so excited to do to do it every tournament or not every tournament every semester um I 13:24 think one of the fun tournaments we're going to run next semester too is a parent student tournament um at ASU there's a parent student weekend and we 13:31 think that's the perfect opportunity to bring out the parents have them play with their students and just have some fun rivalries going on uh and everyone 13:38 I've talked to says they're super excited about that so hopefully that's a blast um I know the last tournament was 13:43 a blast and we're gearing up for one in April as well so I can't wait to see how that goes I think like as kind of like 13:48 what you were saying as we try to expand like our social club thing um one of the things that we were going to try to do 13:53 is uh get the frats and sororities involved which you know I'm in I'm in a 13:59 fraternity all my guys love pickle ball we have a separate group chat in our own fraternity for it but it's kind of hard 14:05 man cuz all these sororities nowadays and fraternities even they're doing pickle ball philanthropy tournament 14:10 fundraisers so I'm like well shoot they're already doing that so now if we put them head tohe head like how's that 14:15 going to work so it's hard man everyone's trying to to take the pickle ball success and use it for themselves I 14:22 agree I think it's so funny because we'll be out there practicing with our social club on a Thursday and like a 14:27 group of 50 to 100 sorian uh fraternity guys will come out and say hey uh can we 14:33 use the courts we're like running some sort of event and I think it's so funny because everybody's like two two three 14:39 years ago no one would be out there right the courts weren't even lined at that time and now there's there's bounds of people we've gotten probably 200 14:45 people on our Four Courts at once it's so funny um and yeah you're you're completely right Greek life is a huge 14:51 source of pickall tournaments and fun and even a lot of our club players they just come from knowing people in their 14:58 Greek life that also play Pickleball so I think it's a great way to expand the sport as well at collegate level and I I 15:04 I think it's it's tough for us because they're stealing our court space and we're stealing their Court space but I love just seeing how many people come 15:10 out to our Four Courts on a Thursday night and and try to play absolutely do you guys have a lot of like ex tennis 15:16 players I know Jake you mentioned uh like that one player you had like I'm one of like three in our entire like 100 15:23 plus 200 plus club that hasn't played tennis like I I mean I I hit tennis 15:29 balls every now and then when was like 10 or something um but like I don't play tennis on the regular and everybody else 15:35 does and so we're like constantly like trying to poach from the tennis team and like we're reaching out to the girls tennis being like please come on you 15:43 know you want to play for this past weekend like I used to play division three tennis before I transferred to Sanford um my mix partner was a high 15:51 school state champion uh our other girl from this past weekend played on Sanford's tenis team before she quit and 15:57 then the guy that we ped picked up randomly just he was a tennis coach at a local Club the only person on our team 16:03 that doesn't play is my normal law school partner which he played basketball and ran track so the guy's 16:08 crazy athletic but oh yeah no yeah same for us I think a lot of our players come from the tennis team ASU is a pretty 16:15 competitive D1 team so we don't get a lot of D1 players of course because they're all paid a lot of money to play 16:21 um but we do get a lot of the the club Tennessee players who come out and and try pick a ball I know a couple of their 16:27 ex captains actually after they were done with the tennis team they just spent their last semester at the the pickleball team and that was a lot of 16:33 fun um but we get a lot of players from All Sports to be honest we have a lot of Club volleyball players on our team um 16:39 we had a D1 rugby player join our team she was amazing um so we get a good mix of players from all different types of 16:44 sports and I think that's great about pickleball it's tennis isn't the only sport that transfers over well you can 16:49 really find skills from all other sports and it's kind of easy to pick up so we've been lucky to get a bunch of 16:55 really athletic players on our team and it's just teaching them the skills to to have them improve over time and in a 17:01 year or two uh I think we'll have a really strong team but yeah we're right in that beginner phase right now but it it's so much fun it's nuts like I like 17:08 what you were saying um like coming from every different type of sport like we have a ton of international students at 17:13 KY Bellon and so on our literal first practice this spring we had a ton of people come in that were like Batman and 17:20 or pingpong or squash or name another racket Sport and they would come in and they Dominate and so you're like why not 17:26 we ran a twop point or best of best of two uh Point tournament where we 17:32 literally told everybody here's what we're doing you're playing two points you win you move up you lose you move 17:37 down and we had this cool like painted racket with a dill with arms and legs on it holding a pickle ball ball hysterical 17:44 and we played in the first tournament and people who like had never played pickle ball before one because it's just 17:50 so easy to pick up like it was really cool to watch yeah no it's the same way for us all of the all the players you 17:56 transfer over are just so good immediately that it it put put a lot of strain on the people who haven't played Sports before cuz they're just knock 18:02 getting knocked down the ranks but I think it's fun too cuz as someone who played a lot of pickle ball instead of other sports I played baseball and 18:08 Tennis before but I switched over to pickle ball um a while ago compared to a lot of our players it's fun just trying 18:14 to increase my skills to keep up with all these super athletic tennis players like Jake who come into pick a ball have 18:19 amazing ground stroks single singles is such a tough game for people who haven't played high level tennis or other sports 18:26 um so I know that's something that we have to all practice but but yeah doubles is a lot of fun playing with just super athletic players who can get 18:32 balls you've never even seen before so um so how is pickleball P perceived at y'all schools I know at our school we 18:38 have a little bit of a hostility between the tennis players and pickleball players I mean that's kind of global at this point for some reason whenever I 18:45 tell people I play Pickleball the immediate reaction is like oh come on really is that really a sport like what are you doing and then like two weeks 18:52 later after I convince them to come out and play with me they're like bro I'm I'm addicted like this is nuts is it 18:57 kind of the same for yall yeah definitely I think um it the the good thing about us is that like I was saying 19:04 there's like a ton of Greek life people who play Pickleball and our social club's pretty big with 500 members and there's a huge alumni base so it's not a 19:12 problem for us to spread like the news about pickleball and everyone kind of gets that it's super fun um where we do 19:18 struggle though is is the club team because like I was saying even though we have a lot of Club players from different sports it it's kind of funny 19:24 cuz they'll their friends will come up and be like oh why' you drop volleyball club to go play Pickleball or oh why' 19:29 you drop tennis to go play Pickleball it is it's just trying to convince as many people as we can to to join pickleball 19:35 from these other club sports um but but yeah it's all in good fun there's no serious rivalries I will say ASU doesn't 19:41 let us use their very nice tennis courts that they have for the D1 team and the club team so we kind of get screwed on 19:47 that front but hey it is what it is they have a D1 tennis facility I guess that's for their tournaments um so it's fair um 19:54 and we're just trying to do what we can for right now but yeah it's got a super good wrap around Arizona's great state 19:59 for pickle ball anyway so it was kind of an easy transition into a Collegiate atmosphere but but yeah I think the best 20:06 things for us so far have been putting together those tournaments putting together clinics and trying to build 20:11 like a social and a team culture for both our social club and our club sport um just to keep the pickleball hype 20:17 going I think for for us here at Sanford just being a smaller school and stuff 20:23 everyone kind of knows everyone and so a lot of it is people see me and like oh 20:29 you're the kid that plays pickle ball I'm like yeah and at first like it wasn't like a super big deal like people 20:34 kind of say it's a joke but then I'm fairly active like posting my tournaments and highlights or whatever 20:40 on social media and then people started like kind of see like oh like he doesn't just go and like play like he practices 20:46 and this is what he does same thing with the rest of our players on our competitive team and it became a thing of like respect you know like now I have 20:53 people asking me like hey I've started playing for fun but I want to get good what paddle do I buy and then I get to 21:00 say hey use code Jake for selker and get me a little Kickback which is always nice but it's become more respected and 21:08 I think that's just what's kind of been cool to see for me at least because when I started I was like shoot man I'm the 21:14 pickle ball guy now but now I take a lot of pride in that um just to be known for 21:19 you know putting Sanford kind of on a map in away whether it be at bigger tournaments or just we have little IM 21:26 tournaments here which I think is something great that the university does just introducing people to the game and 21:32 one of my for training Brothers was like please play with me in the first one and I was like sure man and it just kind of showed everyone like there's levels to 21:38 this and it made people want to play more which is always what my goal is just expand the game yeah no I was just 21:43 gonna say I think there's such a good bandwagon effect with bball too right you can get one person in a friend group to start playing they love it they'll 21:50 bring their entire friend group their entire friend group will love it and then it just starts expanding rapidly from there I know at least at our social 21:56 club um a ton of BR groups will come for their first time not knowing how to play not having any equipment we give them 22:02 paddles we give them balls and then they're there every week for the rest of the semester you know so it it's so great just seeing the bandwagon effect 22:09 of pickleball and how fast it expands through social groups um group life being one of them and and just just 22:15 whoever really comes out and plays and and the the cool thing is too they won't even come just with their friend group 22:21 they'll come alone right say they start with their friend group they'll Branch off they'll go to public courts they'll they'll play with uh community members 22:28 they'll find alumni alumni will tell them about their Club our club one of my one of the things I was scared about at 22:34 at the start was pickleball was going to die off right I know two years ago there was like a huge explosion of pickle ball 22:40 that was really great for the sport but you're always scared like oh when is that explosion going to stop you know and it's going to die off again but I 22:45 haven't seen that happen and I and I'm really excited about uh the prospect to pick a ball especially at the col 22:51 collegate level uh in coming years yeah absolutely and kind of like going off of that like we've seen it super social 22:58 like a lot of times like we get down and we're sitting in the library for hours and hours and hours studying and like we 23:03 go out and play Pickleball and you're literally face to face like whether or not you're 14 feet or I don't know is it 23:09 like 40 feet I think is a total length of 44 or something like that like it's crazy how social it is and um like I'm 23:16 just curious how y'all kind of like have you seen your clubs really get closer as 23:21 like random groups of people because like you're saying uh Nathan like um you'll have one person from a random 23:27 friend group like do you see them jumping in with other people and really making those connections because of how close you get on the court yeah for sure 23:34 well and honestly I think that the biggest thing for us has been um trying to develop a team culture outside of 23:40 playing um one of the problems for us as a first semester Club sport was we would all meet up on the courts we'd play 23:46 around but then everyone would kind of go their separate way um but since then we've had to we've tried to do a couple 23:51 things to increase that team culture so for instance there's a racing canes right next to us that's open till 2 so we'll end our practices at 11:00 and 23:58 then like 20 of us will go to the Raising Cane and just sit there till like 1:00 a.m. talking till dinner um 24:03 and then of course these tournaments are such a fun way to to bond with people I know um at the ncpa we had eight of us 24:09 in a in a two-bedroom one bath apartment so it was nice and uh close there so we 24:16 got a lot of good bonding time and then of course we have different socials like the tournaments of course um clinics 24:21 we're going to run alumni mixers to try to get get an alumni group closer as well dude I don't know how you did that 24:28 because we had had four people in a twoed one bath apartment for that tournament and that was that felt 24:33 cramped specifically for us in our situation since it's just basically five 24:38 of us I mean we become like a little family pretty much we fight all the time about different things who's going to 24:43 play mixed with who at a tournament because I think what we've done really well is getting a group together that all wants to win and we've kind of 24:50 United on like hey like we want to have fun at these tournaments and that's always our goal but like we want to go 24:55 and we want to represent Sanford by winning matches I think that's what's been good for us I wish that we had that 25:01 kind of bigger social Dynamic at the college level through the social clubs that both of y'all were talking about 25:07 and I think we'll get there but what I've noticed more of like a community group is when we go out to Lifetime 25:13 where just Birmingham is such a big pickle ball City in a way that everyone's super connected and invested 25:20 so whenever we do have one of these big tournaments coming up and we're practicing at lifetime or a public court 25:25 everyone knows about it we got asked probably a million times like when are you leaving for San Diego when can we 25:31 watch the live streams like do you guys need anything and those connections have just been super cool just for us both 25:37 like as pickleball players and just Connections in general like I got offered an internship from a guy just on 25:44 the courts the other day which I never thought happen people have started saying like hey if y'all need money 25:49 which like I know we've talked about about a million times like schools don't want to give us money right now because they just don't get it necessarily but 25:57 just having those Community connections of people that support you want to watch your matches you know want to follow 26:02 along and they're even like hey we'll chip in because it is not cheap to get from Birmingham Alabama to San Diego and 26:09 survive for four days but yeah man I mean the community is community in Birmingham is unreal Collegiate pball is 26:15 a great way to meet other people from different schools too you'll go to the the duper regionals and then you'll go 26:20 to ncpa and see the same exact teams and you'll get to know their players um I know for us we we saw a lot of the Utah 26:26 teams at the Utah Regional and then like two weeks later we're out here in San Diego and it's just so much fun not only 26:31 meeting the people within your own club but also meeting the people from the other clubs and seeing them all over the place um it is kind of sad seeing them 26:38 graduate and move on but hey I think everybody at the end of their Collegiate experien has had a great time at the pickleball tournaments and you meet so 26:45 many cool people and yeah like Jake you were saying there's so many business opportunities as well outside of just 26:50 the recreation opportunities right now I'm interning for for duper on their data scientist team so it's been so much 26:57 fun and I I love working in pickleball I I I could imagine nothing better than working in my hobby especially during 27:03 college so I I just think pickleball is such a good social outlet for everybody 27:08 that it that's probably one of the core reasons people still play besides for the the competitive aspect of course 27:14 yeah yeah dude I agree I mean even like just this past weekend talking with like the Utah Tech guys like their president 27:20 and me we became like good friends this past weekend and he was like anytime you want to come out to Utah man like we'll 27:25 go camping and stuff and I was like Hey anytime you to come to Alabama we'll go to a country music concert and a football game so just like connections 27:32 that you like you're in the heat of competition things are intense but like when it's all said and done um pickle 27:38 ball is just good people like it's full of great people which I just so appreciate yeah so y'all talked a little 27:44 bit about like the the pro aspect of it and like watching pickle ball um and I'm 27:50 just curious like do do y'all want like watching it more online or in person and like do you like watching uh other 27:56 amateurs like yourselves or like Pro players because I know at least for me like I like like scrolling through the 28:02 points that they play not too much the matches but I love to sit like in the stands or somewhere and just watch a 28:07 full Pock Ball Match like that's awesome for me yeah I think for me just going in P is a completely different vibe than 28:13 online online you see the point right it's super cool I love seeing highlights but in person you you get you really get 28:19 to see how fast the ball goes I think that's something you can't see online online they make it look so easy and then you go in person it's like oh my 28:24 God how did they get that I know Jake said he he played AP qualifiers back before College I was like really into it 28:30 as a junior so I was playing some of the semi-pro tournaments then and then I took a brief Hiatus for for college and 28:36 now I kind of just run it and I I I don't take it super seriously anymore so I can play five50 tournaments but I 28:42 don't have that same drive to go pro anymore but I I just think every time I was at those tournaments it was so fun 28:48 seeing the pros in person and I've gotten some great opportunities to play with like Ben um and a lot of the other 28:53 Pros in person and it it's just a completely different game when you're watching it up close and person versus online but but hey I think everyone's 29:00 been doing a great job with the online streams as well and I can't wait to see that get better and better over time I 29:05 think it's it's hard man uh you know me being me I want to be on the court like I love watching don't get me wrong but 29:11 the second I start watching I'm like I can make that shot put me in um I love the live streams I think it adds a 29:17 really cool Dynamic to it especially like this past weekend the commentators uh Tyler and Ryland fantastic like my 29:24 family was watching and they were like this makes it feel real um which we know how much work we all put into this and I 29:30 think it just shows there and then I mean over the summer when like college pickle ball slows down like I'm going 29:37 down to Opa like at a train with Rafa huitt Marshall Brown and stevenh bass this summer and then me and my partner 29:43 just made our Pro summer schedule so like I'm just excited to get out there man I love watching but nothing beats playing especially in front of a crowd 29:49 so both of it y'all are like super competitive and like that's one thing I want to be in the future I don't have the time to do that right now and I know 29:56 um Nathan like you literally really just said like it's hard to do it when you're running the whole whole club but what do 30:01 you all feel about the uh duper ratings because like currently we're struggling to get a ton of people rid um and just 30:08 because like it's hard to play in some tournaments and get people um get people rated who are not like necessarily super 30:14 compet super competitive but like that versus like the utr that they have for tennis like what's your thoughts on that 30:20 I mean I'm not AE fan of ratings personally um I spent all of my 30:26 childhood obsessing about that utr tennis rating so now that I'm in college I'm kind of like obviously it's really 30:33 cool to be like Oh I'm a five whatever five I think I'm like a five3 duper and stuff but at the same time like I've 30:40 gone out and beat sixes you know they're I'm the only ranked member of our team like the two girls are unranked yet you 30:47 know they beat Utah Valley and pool play this weekend so I think ringings are cool I think they're helpful for helping 30:54 people decide what level of tournament to S up for but when you get into a college like open format or even Pro 30:59 open format everyone's good I mean everyone can can beat anyone uh in most 31:05 like levels of it obviously there's some some outliers but at the end of the day it's whoever wins that last Point yeah I 31:11 agree I think ratings are something that are built over time and right now the collegia pickleball scene is so new just 31:16 for instance uh at California this weekend we sent our third team to go play the main draw and we knew they were 31:22 going to get killed it's a really tough draw they'd only been playing for maybe four months um as a team and they and 31:28 some of them had only been playing pickleball for four months right but they were all good tennis players and volleyball players so they got it it was 31:35 tough for them and we knew it but they had so much fun and I just think ratings don't do it justice right now maybe in a 31:40 couple years it will but you you really you can pick up a club volleyball player and even though they're not going to go 31:46 win the tournament they're going to have a great time and have some good matches against some some good players right a lot of people's ratings are either too 31:52 high or too low especially at the Collegiate level because they're playing within their own clubs and when you play within your own club you tend to have 31:58 like a bubble um but as people start venturing out playing more PPA APS I 32:03 think the ratings will get more and more accurate and I just hope one day we can have a super accurate rating system where we can see the strengths of all 32:10 the colleges and that can be really a source of fun competition how how do you all feel about like the different tournament Styles because like I've 32:16 noticed like we haven't been to anything other than duper tournaments at least for like Club level um but like 32:22 sometimes we run Club versus Club here like we played rmu and some other clubs uh like we play in the play p we played 32:28 Mount alawishes as well like some smaller clubs Like Us in Pennsylvania how do you all feel about like the big 32:34 tournaments because I don't think they're all run the same are they all of the duper tournaments run on the MLP schedule and then I think a lot of the 32:40 other organizations are trying to run more individualized tournaments like ncpa where it's more doubles like mix 32:46 doubles women's doubles men's doubles singles honestly I like the MLP schedule just because it's it's more of a team- 32:52 based atmosphere and of course ncpa did a great job running it Noah shout out to him he he did a great job um but I think 33:00 I think the cool thing about Collegiate is that you can just bring 20 people from your school and go watch A Match 33:05 and you can cheer each other on um and I think that's something duper's done a great job with the MLP style matches 33:12 it's just I can watch sit there watch my team play a really close match against another school for five games if needed 33:19 um and I'm not saying the individual style is bad at all I just think it's like hey the individual style is like 33:24 you play one or two men's doubles games against the school and then you move on right whereas the MLP is like oh I'm playing men's doubles women's doubles 33:30 mix doubles against them you know and it's just that fun competitive rivalry where it builds up over the course of 33:36 the matches and then if you make it to a dream breaker that nothing's more fun than that right A Dream breaker on Center Court is so much fun so for me 33:44 personally I like the MLP style but I will say individuals is probably probably definitely going to pick up 33:49 steam in terms of organizations running Collegiate pick ball tournaments because it's tough right now like Jake was 33:54 saying to find players who can fill in spots for players can't make it to tournaments right so if we're trying to 33:59 make it out to a tournament and it's MLP style and we can't bring one of our top players um you immediately lose a lot of 34:06 your um fighting strength you know and that's something that's kind of shored up in an individual tournament I think 34:11 it's a lot like the rating systems where we have so many different styles right now that at least I would appreciate 34:16 kind of like some more consensus like agreed upon stuff because it makes strategizing hard honestly because you 34:22 can take a format like the AP did where your top guy and Top Girl are playing 34:28 men's singles women's singles men's doubles women's doubles and mixed so that's three matches and then multiply 34:35 that by howman you're in your pool then we got knockout play Then AP did indidual brackets on top of that like 34:41 that first day up there I woke up at six I didn't go to bed till 12 and I played 20 plus matches which is just physically 34:47 exhausting but it's also nice because a school like mine that we don't have a 34:52 ton of players we can send out our top people and still make top five I mean 34:58 same thing even with no with what ncpa did this weekend so I really do appreciate that aspect of the game um I 35:04 think it rewards the people that take it seriously which is what I appreciate of 35:09 it um I really did love ncpa though this past weekend I mean I think Noah got it 35:14 right when it comes to the Perfect Blend of Team competitiveness and social 35:20 aspect the only part that I didn't love was the Breakaway at the end between the men's and the women's and no mixed uh 35:26 that might just be because team is really strong and mixed and I was a little salty about that but uh I really 35:32 enjoyed the social aspect of that last one um but I think it was the Perfect Blend of rewarding the players that do 35:38 practice a lot kind of not like allowing them to carry their team but allowing them to earn the points that they 35:44 deserve to earn the streaming was so cool at ncpa they they did a great job with that and I hope more tournaments 35:50 pick it up like that I think the bigger the stadium court and the more money that goes into the streaming service the 35:55 cooler the tournament and I know all of the College tournaments are trying to do that right now but they just did a fantastic job with that and I hope to 36:01 see it at more tournaments 100% And that that kind of moves us to like how do y'all like broadcast your play so like I 36:09 know we have this one instagram account where we post like silly stuff like for instance when we were trying to get people to join we put our my other 36:16 co-president in a pickle costume and threw him onto the uh football field and said join pickle ball and like that's 36:22 the kind of vibe we have on there but also at the same time when we're playing matches against other people or individual match is we like to set up a 36:28 camera and like video the whole thing so like how do y all use um uh social media 36:34 to like show off your show off your Club basically yeah I think there's definitely two parts to it one is that 36:39 fun U oh it's just pickall at the end of the day you know let's make this like super funny you know um we're trying to 36:45 do that um admittedly we haven't been able to do put much effort into that yet but going forward as we're a more 36:52 established Club sport that's definitely something we're going to spend a lot of time and resources doing um on the 36:57 competitive like live streaming side I've heard a couple different things from a couple different schools we usually like to live stream um on 37:05 Instagram or Facebook I know at the past couple tournaments it's been tough for us just because we have so many teams and it's like oh who are going to live 37:11 stream now but um I have heard things from schools like oh I don't know if we should live stream because I don't know if the other school wants this um or I 37:18 don't know if we should live stream because I don't know if it's worth using all those resources for a very small stream you know what we're going to 37:25 probably be doing is getting some GoPros setting it up on all of our all of our club courts and all of our uh bringing 37:30 them to tournaments and just filming the matches and then posting it to a YouTube account I think that's been um really 37:36 good for a lot of schools who do it um and it's super fun going back and watching your matches you know who who doesn't like going back and watching 37:42 their own matches you know win or lose like oh that was a great shot I should pull that out more um and I think that 37:48 that's super cool no dude I feel that I love watching those matches back I mean I've gone on trailer from this past 37:53 weekend to rewatch some of those Center Court matches that I was in like a thousand times especially just because 37:58 the commentator guys were so funny we haven't really branched into the social aspect so we have an Instagram we don't 38:04 really use it a ton yet we do a lot of filming not necessarily live streaming per se but um just filming and then at 38:11 the end of the weekend we'll box it all together most of the time it's like for individuals so like I'll cut my videos 38:18 that I want to post on my personal Instagram the girls will do the same thing and then our other guy will do the same thing just cuz right now for us in 38:25 the position that we kind of want to be in we want to promote it more as like it is 38:31 the competitive team you know like you're here to get better you're here to win and then when social side grows you 38:37 know we'll do pizza mixers you know we'll go into that sort of thing you know the pickle costume which I'm gonna 38:44 let someone else put on not me but you know just those kind of things will come when they come but right now I mean I'm 38:50 a junior our other people are all Juniors they're older we're really trying to win now while we can you know 38:56 that win now mentality and so that's kind of taken the front seat and then the streaming and the the marketing is 39:01 taking a back seat which you know it will get done I know it will but I mean the spring especially for pickleball man 39:07 like it's packed like ncpa we got duper regionals coming up then we got duper championships after that like it's slam 39:14 packed and then I've fit in a couple AP Pro qualities in there I don't got time to be dressing up in pickle costumes 39:19 right now though um well I mean like the last thing uh I wanted to ask was because I'm I'm probably not going there 39:26 I'm not good enough for this but y'all seem like super good at pickleball do you guys plan to play like Pro or like 39:31 teach at all after you graduate yeah man I mean that's the goal obviously I teach 39:38 right now um pretty regularly at lifetime but my competitive Pro partner 39:45 uh we work together he's a Sanford graduate actually so um that's our plan 39:50 man I mean while I'm in college there's no better time to do it you know and I I think we can I know we can I mean we've 39:55 won quality matches we've been very close to making main draws recently and we've only gotten better since then I 40:00 think especially in singles for me I think there's great opportunities there and I mean they're they're dumping so 40:06 much money into pickle ball right now especially with not to plug cirk again but selkirk's emerging Pro program I 40:12 mean if you win a Kali match you get a good amount of money for that which pays your entry fee which as we know as 40:18 college kids we need that money to make it worth it to go to these tournaments otherwise you're just you know you might not eat that week but you know they 40:25 they're trying and that's the goal man win pro matches we don't got to beat Ben John's yet but we we got matches I look 40:31 forward to seeing you beat him in the future like it give you three years three years yeah give me a year and a 40:36 half give me a year and a half maybe two months about that man no I completely 40:43 agree it I I used to be sponsored by S and they did a great job I love all of their initiatives and I think they've 40:48 done great things for the sport as well um for me personally I I think at this 40:53 point I I've seen like the competitive side and the social side and I think want to move into the business of pickle 40:58 ball so like Jake I teach right now and it's just been so cool meeting so many different people and and being a able to 41:04 set up different events clinics tournaments all of that stuff I think there's like Jake was saying there's 41:09 great money in pickle ball and it's just trying to find out which Avenue you want to find that money in um I gave like my 41:15 duper is like a 5.1 right now so when I was younger I probably peaked at this point to be honest I've play been 41:22 playing for a couple years so I like to joke that I peaked um so I tried when I was younger to really put in a lot of 41:28 time and effort into maybe going pro one day but I I don't think that's for me um I I think I see pickleball as more of 41:33 like a social and business Avenue so I I'm more than happy just to keep coaching and and trying to grow and 41:40 develop pickle ball as a as as a sport around Arizona and there's so many Connections in Arizona that I have that 41:45 are doing great things right now so I just want to help them out and especially on the junior circuit there's so many highle Juniors out here in 41:51 Arizona so maybe helping them out with whatever they need you know whether it be um coaching or or whatever they need 41:58 right so I I'm a little bit deviant from Jake where I'm not going to try to go pro but I I definitely respect it a lot 42:05 he's so good I watched him at ncpa his his singles was killer no and I hope app do great things 42:13 yeah I mean like I'm not I'm not going pro anytime soon but I'm I'm kind of like you Nathan uh like I'm I'm looking 42:19 at the business aspet being like how can I get involved whether in not actually being making money and just like being involved in like advocating for more uh 42:26 pickle ball uh in the colleges like I'm at least advocating for more funding in our school and then I'm going to try for 42:33 other schools in Pennsylvania because I know it's like super fun for kids um and just getting everybody out on the courts 42:38 like that's my main goal at the end of the day more people playing more people getting active um so yeah anyway it's 42:44 been super awesome talking with You' all this has been sick um and yeah that's Collegiate 42:54 tailgate 42:55

WHAT THEY'RE DOING AT THE REVOLUTION: Check-out EP2 of the AWE-INSPIRING PANELISTS of COLLEGIATE PICKLEBALL TAILGATE. Hosted by the unflappable brilliance of Carnegie Mellon Pickleball Club President Tristan Ohler, EP 2 panelists Nathan Tang (ASU PICKLEBALL CLUB PREZ) & Jake Wilson (SAMFORD PICKLEBALL CLUB FOUNDER/PREZ) drill-down on what it's like to be a collegiate entrepreneur launching a movement at their schools across the country. With more than 40 million players in the U.S. alone - with majority of those players joining the sport since 2021 - Pickleball is nothing short of a movement - it's a revolution, actually. xxoo TT


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