SBD/Issue 15/Sports Industrialists

What I Like.... With U.S. Olympic Fencer Tim Morehouse

Morehouse Loves The
Book "Never Eat Alone"
In our continuing series, SportsBusiness Daily/SportsBusiness Journal asks top sports personalities for their thoughts, ideas, aspirations and likes. Today, U.S. Olympic fencer, educator and motivational speaker TIM MOREHOUSE.

What I like in an insight: I love the book "Never Eat Alone" by KEITH FERRAZI. He is right on that relationships are the secret sauce to success.

An influential person in my career: I've been blessed to have had so many amazing influences in my life. Over the past 10 years my coach, YURY GELMAN, has helped take me from a strong college fencer to one of the top fencers in the world. He is also currently battling cancer and the bravery for which he faces his challenges is truly inspiring. If he can face cancer with positivity and without fear, I know that I can face any obstacle without fear on the playing field. Also, JACKIE ROBINSON was a big influence. I did a book report about him when I was 10 and his perseverance in the face of unprecedented challenges to overcome the color barrier in baseball was very inspiring to me.

An out-of-the-box idea: "Strong and Wrong" is a motto to use. Sometimes it's most important to take action confidently even if you're unsure what the "right" answer is. There is no perfect answer to any situation, but how you execute is key. It's often better to make a plan and just go for it using whatever information you have than to be unconfident in your action because you weren't 100% certain. You can succeed if you go all out even if your plan isn't perfect. Hence, "strong and wrong!" On the other end, if you are "right" but don't do it 100%, you might not succeed because you haven't fully committed yourself as necessary.

A timeless idea: Hard work = results.

Morehouse Says He Spent Many Days Of His
Childhood Watching Games At Yankee Stadium
A sports facility
: I love baseball stadiums ...  the old Yankee Stadium where I spent many days during my childhood watching the Yankees.

A sports event: The Olympics. Greatest sporting event on earth! People ask me what it's like to be at the Olympics and it's so hard to describe well, but the comparison I make is that it's like the "Chronicles of Narnia." You live an entire lifetime in this fantasy land where anything is possible.

A strategy: Use data to determine where you are in relation to achieving your goals and to determine what actions are bringing you the most results and do those actions more often. (The 80/20 Principal: 80% of your results come from 20% of your actions.)

A brand: Fencing is the sport of electronics! We're the only sport where the athletes actually wear machines and are wired up. I would love to be sponsored by Radio Shack or some other electronics brand. Brands I also use include The Isopure Protein shake. It's a daily part of my diet and training. Love the Hugo Boss clothing brand, especially the suits.

A pro league or team business initiative: I'm the national spokesperson for Kid Fitness, a program dedicated to fighting childhood obesity, so what the NFL is doing to promote children participating in sports and eating healthy is really an initiative I appreciate and support.

Morehouse Believes Fencing Will Help Lead
Movement To Make Smaller Sports Mainstream
A story that bears watching
: USA Fencing! I believe we're going to help lead a movement to get more of the "smaller" sports in our country into the mainstream. Only so many kids can play baseball, basketball and football. We've got to diversify the options for children and get our country's youth back to exercising.

A fantasy job: Already living it! Being an Olympian and being a motivational speaker and teacher.

What I like about my job: As a motivational speaker for adults and children, I love that I can help others achieve their goals and dreams.

Sports: That it breaks down barriers. Put people on a playing field and they forget all about race and other differences and they become partners in winning. The impact lasts far beyond the playing field.

Sports business: The idea of transferring the lessons and hard work on the playing field to others as inspiration is a great part of the business behind sports.

Sports technology: Fencing is now electronic ... back in the old days it was first blood that determined who won a fencing match, so I really appreciate the fact that my sport no longer involves getting stabbed and bleeding.

Competing: The challenge of facing the pressure, the nerves and testing yourself each time you go out.

Sports fans: Where would any of us be without our fans and supporters? I would never have made the Olympics without tons of support along the way. The fans are what it's all about.

What I would like to change: More coverage of fencing and other emerging sports on television in the United States. There are only so many kids who can play basketball, baseball and football, and we have so many great athletes and sports to try in our country that greater exposure to these sports and their role models will only benefit our children.

Change in what I do: I'm always looking to learn lessons and step up my game in all aspects. You can always improve and there is no point of "making it" where you get to stop. Each day I'm looking to improve.

See more of in sports: The hard work that goes behind what athletes do on the playing field.

See less of in sports: The excessive celebrations or putting down of opponents. You can win with class and honor while respecting your opponent.

What I don't like -- my pet peeve: People that make excuses and can't see that challenges are meant to be overcome and not unstoppable barriers. People that think small about what can be accomplished and spend their time tearing down others who are trying to achieve big goals. I've never understood people who spend their time attacking others versus trying to make something out of their own lives.

In sports: Excuses.

What I like in people: I love people who dream big and go for it. People who are nice and want to succeed and help others succeed. These are the people who will change the world for the better.

That would surprise those who know me: I'm scared of flying, but I fly all the time.

Above all else: Dream big and go for it. Also, work hard and be nice.

Robinson Was Morehouse's First Hero
Heroes
: My first hero was Jackie Robinson who I wrote about in elementary school for a project. Reading and learning about his accomplishments and challenges in breaking down the color barrier in baseball inspired me that I can overcome any obstacle in my life. Also, WENDY KOPP, the founder of Teach For America. She turned her idea that we can close the educational achievement gap in our poorer neighborhoods by recruiting our country's best leaders into the classroom into a reality despite her professor giving her a C+ when it was her college thesis. Today, Teach For America is helping hundreds of thousands of kids across the country and helping to reform our educational system.

Players: DON MATTINGLY, JOHN STARKS for his heart and my Olympic fencing teammate KEETH SMART.

Teams: Yankees, Knicks, Giants and Team USA Fencing.

City: New York City.

Possession: Autographed Jackie Robinson baseball my father gave me.

Memento: My college warmups from when I was just a good athlete at a small school ... to remind me of how far I have come to make the Olympics.

Time of year (because): Spring ... it's warm, but not too hot and the baseball season is starting!

Dave Matthews Band Among
Morehouse's Favorite Bands
Music
: '80s music, Dixie Chicks, Bon Jovi, DAVE MATTHEWS and any kind of music that inspires and is fun.

Books: "Awaken the Giant Within," "Tipping Point," "7 Habits of Highly Effective People," "Outliers," "Harry Potter."

Authors: TONY ROBBINS, MALCOLM GLADWELL, STEPHEN COVEY.

Magazines: Sports Illustrated, Men's Health.

Web sites: I most frequent ESPN.com, CNN.com and TeachForAmerica.org.

Gadgets: I can't go anywhere without my Crackberry ... I mean Blackberry!

Chores: Laundry.

Hobbies: Blogging, watching movies and playing basketball.

Trips: As an Olympic fencer I have been to over 45 countries. Dubai, Madrid and Italy are some of my favorite places to go! Most unique: Iran and Senegal in Africa.

Movies: "Old School," "Jerry Maguire," "Wedding Crashers."

 Morehouse Lists "South Park" As
One Of His Favorite TV Shows
TV
: "Lost," "Heroes," "Smallville," "The Wire," "The Sopranos" and "South Park."

Concerts: Aerosmith.

Food: I'm a steak-eating kind of guy.

Dessert: Chocolate chip cookies and chocolate ice cream.

Drink: 20-calorie Vitaminwater.

Vacation spots: I've never taken a vacation, but I would love to go to Costa Rica sometime.

Cars: I'm a city guy, so I'm all about the subway, but I do like BMWs.

Singer: TRACY CHAPMAN.

Quote: "The long arc of the world tilts towards justice" -- MARTIN LUTHER KING.

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