Patch.com chatted with Northwest's Mike Neubesier, who recently became the fifth football coach in school history, to discuss his thoughts about the future of the program, some of the mentors he's had along the way and gauge his expectations for the upcoming season.
Germantown Patch: First off, congratulations to you. As a long-time assistant in the county, what does this promotion mean to you personally and professionally?
Mike Neubeiser: Being a head coach is something I always had my mind set on doing. To be honest, with two young kids at home, I was planning on waiting until they got a little bit older.
But when this opportunity presented itself, I knew I couldn't pass it up. I felt like if I didn't take advantage of this opportunity, I might not ever get another shot.
Becoming the head coach at Northwest, where I helped start the program when it first opened in 1998 and where I've been a teacher for all these years, means a lot.
Patch: Walk us through the timeline of events on how your hiring came about.
Neubeiser: After coach [Bob] Hampton announced his resignation last month, I approached them right away with interest in the job. I was definitely interested in the position. They didn't need to ask me to apply or anything like that.
Obviously, there had to be an official process and they opened up the job to all interested candidates. And I found out last week I would be offered the job.
Patch: What is going to be the first thing you focus on as head coach?
Neubeiser: The first thing is getting bigger, stronger and faster. And that all begins in the weight room this off season. We definitely need to get more physical as a football team.
The second thing is generating interest in the program again. I can't tell you the exact number of players on the varsity roster this year, but I can tell you, it wasn't too high above 30. And that's too low a number. I think you need more kids. If we can generate excitement about the program again, I think we'll be on the right track.
Patch: You played for John Harvill and coached alongside him as well. You also coached alongside Randy Trivers and Dave Mencarini and between the three of them, they have won four state titles in their careers. What are some of the things you learned from these coaches along the way?
Neubeiser: From each of those coaches, I definitely learned different things. From Coach Harvill, he's just a class act. And I think that's the No. 1 thing I would take from him. He is such a good person and a classy coach.
Coach Trivers was so dedicated to the program and to the kids. If I can take just some of what he had, I'll be just fine.
And Dave Mencarini is such a competitor. He's been a good mentor for me. I've spoken to him a lot over the last several weeks and he's helped me out a lot. I plan to continue to stay in touch with him. He's been a huge, huge help as I get ready for this new challenge.
And in addition to those guys, playing for Jim Caldwell at Wake Forest, who's now the head coach for the Indianapolis Colts, I learned a ton about discipline. I don't think I've ever shown up to a meeting less than 10 minutes early. He instilled in us such a sense of discipline and he's just a great person.
Patch: I understand you will be holding a community Open House on Tuesday. What will your message be to future players, parents and the community as a whole?
Neubeiser: I've already spoken to some of the kids in class on Friday and everyone seems to be pretty enthusiastic. I plan to meet with the rest of the team on Monday and on Tuesday night, I'll meet with parents and the community.
My main thing is I think we have all the right parts to make a great program. We just need to all be on the same page. As head coach, I am going to be really dedicated to communicating with everyone and ensuring that we all have the same goals in mind.
The young kids that are coming up are a talented group. But, it's been so long since they have been part of a winning program. They need to learn how to win, how to compete, learn to all work together. And as a coaching staff, teaching all of those things will be our main focal point.
Click here, for more on Neubeiser's hiring.
The Mike Neubeiser File
- Gaithersburg High School: 1986-1989 (All-Met 1989)
- Wake Forest University: 1990-1994
Assistant Coaching Experience:
- Gaithersburg High School: 1995-1997
- Northwest High School (Defensive Coordinator): 1998-2003
- Quince Orchard High School (Defensive Coordinator): 2004-2008 (member of 2007 4A state championship team)
- Northwest High School: 2009-2010
Head Coaching Experience:
- Northwest High School: 2010-