Fairfield senior Aaron Haines was nominated by Trojan Head Football Coach Matt Jones for the Iowa Football Coaches Association?s Academic All State team.
Criteria for nomination and selection are: Player must be a senior starter, player must have a cumulative GPA of 3.7 or better at the end of their junior year, player must be involved in other extra-curricular activities, and the head coach must recommend the player.
Talk about the work you put into this award.
Haines: You have to make sure you study for everything, be prepared and use good time management.
What, if any, are the differences between the work on and off the field?
Haines: It?s actually similar. With football, it?s just studying plays instead of school material and then when you have a test or gameday you?ll know what to do.
Smart kids tend to be lazy. Do you consider yourself a smart kid or a hard-worker?
Haines: I?d say some of both. I can find myself procrastinating a bit, but I put the work in to make sure stuff is done on time.
What does it mean to represent Fairfield High School in such a positive light as this?
Haines: It means a lot. I know many athletes struggle with academics but I take pride in that and make sure it remains a priority.
Talk about the importance of having these positive honors while you?re trying to build your program.
Jones: We always stress in our program the importance of being a student first, an athlete second and a gentleman, a good high-quality person. You know Aaron reflects that and obviously he?s had really good results with his GPA being high enough to even be nominated. He?s put in the work and it takes a lot to balance academics and activities, but we actually think that if you can do that successfully, it?s easier to budget your time and find success on the field and in life because there?s a lot of things we have to balance in life and Aaron has done a great job of that. I?m just really proud of him.
Speaking of balance, talk about your role in blending all the different strengths and weaknesses of a large group such as your football team.
Jones: The challenge is to get everyone to give their best effort. We might have kids with a 2.0 GPA that are busting their rear-ends and giving the best they can and those kids are just as important as long as they learn work ethic and do what they need to on a daily basis to achiece the results needed to contribute. It?s fun to work with such a wide-variety of kids. Kids that are hands-on learners, kids that are in the books, just kids from all different backgrounds. The challenge is to bring all of those kids together and form a true team and that?s what we?re trying to do.