Justin Morrow: Never Take Anything For Granted I #AskASoccerPro Show Ep 082

11-year MLS veteran Quincy Amarikwa welcomes you to episode 82 of the #AskASoccerPro Show! This week Quincy interviews Black Players for Change Executive Director and Toronto FC defender, Justin Morrow!

Check out what Quincy and Justin discuss this week:

00:00 – 05:35: Welcome To The #AskASoccerPro Show Ep 82!

05:36 – 08:31: 2020 Is All About The Vision! #ALLCAPSNOCAP

08:33 – 13:36: Is Soccer Canceled Where You Live?

13:40 – 18:28: What Inspired Quincy To Create Perfect Soccer? @tony_aliji 

18:30 – 22:27: MSL: The Mustache Shaving League

22:29 – 24:15: Do You Need A Soccer Resume?

24:16 – 30:03: This Family Gave Up Their D.C. United Season Tickets… Because Of Quincy!  @george_battistelli

30:07 – 50:25 Justin Morrow, Executive Director of Black Players For Change, Shares His Secrets To Success @justmorrow

30:07 – 33:02: Executive Director of Black Players For Change & TFC LB Justin Morrow Joins The #ASKASOCCERPRO Show! @justmorrow

33:03 - 37:05: How Does A Striker End Up Being A Defender?! @justmorrow

37:06 – 39:33: Why Spatial Awareness and Skill Are Key to Success @justmorrow

39:36 - 44:22: How Being Humble Can Extend Your Career @justmorrow

44:23 – 46:57: Personality Vs. Skill, Which Is More Important? @justmorrow

46:58 – 51:15: Which Season Was Justin’s Personal Best? @justmorrow

51:16 – 54:02: Chicago Fire Goals and The Triple Jump Celebration @scooter_bluecar

54:03 – 58:51: Quincy’s Final Thoughts On Justin Morrow’s Career 

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*Transcript is unedited and machine-generated. There will be errors. For further clarity please refer to the audio or video. 


Quincy Amarikwa (00:00):

We're all here to ride the MSL wave. The Mental Strength League! I'd like to welcome you to another episode of the #AskASoccerPro Show! George. What's going on, man. Good to see you. Castillo Connor Johnson. Welcome. Welcome Matt. Welcome Tony. What's going on here? Ryan Ellie 24 said, Hey Quincy, what's going on, man? An S welcome Fernando, no jump dropping them in your head. Emoji love seeing that George making lots of progress, man. Lots of work full steam ahead, a hundred miles an hour over Humphrey, an S what's going on, Joe Jackson. Welcome everything. LA galaxy joint.

Quincy Amarikwa (01:15):

What's going on? Julian joined in Serena, joined in as well. Mcnasty 2002. So it was good. It's and then the D afterwards, it's going good. Pooja junior job joined in with the I'm in your head. Emojis. I think, I think Pooja is probably, I think that would accurately describe him. We're. How about this other shows as a soccer per show? You guys know what it is living in your head, rent free, get it all caps, no cap. Connor said it's 2:00 AM in England and Connor always joins us in he, Oh man, I love seeing Connor show that commitment.

Quincy Amarikwa (02:06):

Kind of what kind of here's the cost for you? Are you staying up until two in the clock in the morning to watch the show? Or are you setting an alarm to wake up at two in the morning to tune into the show? I, I need to know. I need to understand what you were up to you. This late into the evening on your side of the planet winning strong for life said, just order two balls. He's talking about the perfect soccer pitch. Thank you very much for your order. I'm excited for you. We got some dope, like I'm dope, like inscriptions on the side of the ball for some links says to some of our promo marketing material stuff. And then we've got some like cool campaigns we're coming up with, hopefully that will drop here eventually to create like even more games that people can participate in when they get themselves a perfect soccer match. Ball also

Quincy Amarikwa (03:00):

Got some mini mini match balls coming in as well too. We're getting those ordered and I'm excited for those as well too. Cause you guys know the seventh core value in the miracle process is passion and fun. And I'm wanting us to really focus on the fun and the passion here. I think the whole community has been dedicated at tune in to the MSL and I've been putting in a lot of great hard work. We have fun here on the show. We work hard. We have a good time. We have fun, but I want to focus more on the fun and that's what we're getting to. So the mini balls are gonna be dope. I'm excited for those hopefully in the next couple of weeks there'll be coming in.

Quincy Amarikwa (03:41):

But yeah,

Quincy Amarikwa (03:43):

Kick it off. Actually. Let me look up again. Cause see, I like this new setup that I've got here. When I got the dope poster in the background, that's in the perfect soccer skills.com store. If you guys didn't know, we've got posters up there as well too, but I like framed posters. I like that one. That one's dope. But I like this set up cause I got the computer in front of me and I could do some quick I can do some quick research. I can do a quick quick I'm trying to do some research to figure out

Quincy Amarikwa (04:19):

Episode 82,

Quincy Amarikwa (04:24):

The #AskASoccerPro Show. I think last week I said we were host production, so I wanted to get it right this time. I believe welcome everybody to episode 82 of the #AskASoccerPro Show!

Quincy Amarikwa (04:40):

Where we talk about the M S L I'm in your head, MSL, AKA the mental strength league with your host. That would be me 11 year MLS that's major league soccer pro. And on this show, we break down the N S L. It is a game where you are either an active participant in you joining in the community and you learn all. You need to learn to Excel and thrive in the world. Or you are, you are just unaware and you are a pawn in the game, steady getting played. And every Thursday, 6:00 PM, PST 9:00 PM EST. Everyone joins us here, live on the perfect soccer account to, you know, just grow teamwork equals dreamwork. Where's that shirt. I got this shirt over here somewhere. I was wearing that earlier today because you guys know what it is. And if you don't know what it is, it doesn't matter. You're going to learn because 2020 is about the book.

Quincy Amarikwa (05:41):

It's a 2020 vision, the 2020 views. You guys, guys, girls what's been what's been standing out to you like as of late, have a, have you guys had any revelations, Timmy peg 14. Welcome. What's going on?

Quincy Amarikwa (06:08):

You guys had any revelations what's going on? Like, is there anything that's happening that is surprising to you? You weren't aware of your you've just recently realized, like I need some feedback from the community what's what's been going on

Quincy Amarikwa (06:26):

With with everybody with this time of self reflection and quarantine and, and learning this learning how to operate in this, in this in this new world. Love to get some feedback from everybody. I'm seeing Tammy spamming spam the heart button. Shannon welcome. Andre is joined in no context. Joe Dylan joined in

Quincy Amarikwa (06:59):

Connor said, yes, I normally talk to a friend. Then I always join the #AskASoccerPro Show. That is, that sounds like a great plan. Julian said we need perfect soccer, MSL, shin guards, you right out here, steady protecting. We're protecting our mind with the MSL, but we can also protect our shins with some shinguards. Now that's the list add? Fernandino asked Quinn's Hey Quincy, w a F E R N a N D I N H O dot underscore 30 asks. Hey Quincy, what did you study in college? I studied premed. I did premed exercise biology at university of California Davis. The plan in college was to get my undergraduate degree to go to medical school. To at the time I was leaning towards orthopedic surgery. Another great episode, incoming Tony underscore a L J I No cap. That is correct. Is and is all caps? No cap.

Quincy Amarikwa (08:09):

I like that. We're coming with the flames. Come with the new sames. All caps, no cap poo that's like that. I forgot what was going on viral a couple of weeks ago. Yo, we're coming super excited in all caps with no cat bro, bro.

Quincy Amarikwa (08:33):

A Casty goal said I'm in Minnesota. It's going on here? Soccer canceled Ryan said is soccer canceled in California or everybody has a good question. Where are you at? Is it canceled? Is soccer still canceled where you're at in your side of the world? Or has it opened back up with where you were at? George said he had grown the stash. I know I was looking, I guess a little uneven here. Maybe we do a little, Oh, do I've got my finger right here. Oh, I thought my, Oh is it here? Oh yeah, it is well back. Okay. Look, my wife just bought me this where's my stashes uneven.

Quincy Amarikwa (09:50):

Oh, everyone's spam that hard. But leave that this week. Now when people see when they're first starting out and be like, Hey, like you're on. Even mustache was throwing me up. I was in your head and now you can be free. You're free because we've got the vision. So you look and then through those glasses, you see marvelous, marvelous. Everyone's spammed that heart button. Look at that. We just, we come with, we come with the new, the new things that have never been seen before on live on live. Is anybody inched up their bus stash, their thin mustache on Instagram, trendsetters here. We're just setting new everything. That's what we do. Love that everyone spam the heart button on that. That's going to be our comfort. That's going to be the commercial promoting this episode. When we get the replay up, just me bringing up the new razor, my or edger, my wife and boys bought me for father's day. Let's see what we got here.

Quincy Amarikwa (11:03):

A hard button and yeah. Yes. E Connor makes Connor MC 42 said EPL was back in September. It looks like he's very excited about that. The official Justin joined in speaking of Justin's, we've got a special guest who will be joining in here around six 30. Cause you guys know on the show, we'd like to break down the mentalities of some of the top players in the MLS and we'll be having a special guests joining in here in 15 minutes. So as we, you guys, world between now and our special unannounced, yes. Drop some questions down below, keeps spamming that heart button. Cause I love it. Timmy pig, 14 said, if you don't use it, you lose it. This goes for soccer and beyond practice. What you want to use in your everyday life consistently. So you don't lose your progress. And that is all caps, no cap. That should be the all caps, no cap challenge. You only, you share a saying in all caps, but there can't be any cap in your all cap statement. If you don't use it, you lose it. What does that even mean?

Quincy Amarikwa (12:23):

You guys know that reference. Let me know. Unfortunately I've got to head out of this one, but as always I'm in your head, see ya insider Rapids. Thanks for stopping by appreciate it brother. Ryan said a soccer canceled in San Jose. Fernandina said I've been training during this time and studying for my DMV test will, Hey, good luck should be plenty of space on the road. Right there. Shouldn't be anywhere near as many cars on the road as there is normally. So George said, we gave up our DC United season tickets for next season. That'll teach them not to bring you back. I don't know how I feel about that. I appreciate you supporting me, but I, you know, why, why don't you, why don't you guys have your season tickets? Why don't you give up the season tickets what's going on? Like I'm not, I appreciate the support, but I don't want you to not enjoy the game and local soccer, you know? Yeah, let me know. What's what is the deal with that?

Quincy Amarikwa (13:40):

Tony underscore a L I J I asked, Hey Quincy, what inspired you to create this perfect underscore soccer page? Well the perfect soccer page was, was eventually created after we started the business and the business started with our first book, which was the ultimate college soccer recruiting blueprint. So I don't know if there's any Oh, G O G perfect soccer community members out here who were around for our first official product that we launched. And maybe if you purchased it or not at that time. But that book was the result of me meeting Rossell bow when I got traded to Colorado Rapids back in 2010. And when I heard Ross talk to me about his re college recruitment process and story by the time he was a senior in high school, he had over 20 plus college recruitment offers and he ultimately chose to go to U UVA where he kept in the team and went on to win an NCAA championship.

Quincy Amarikwa (14:36):

And I know hopefully, or maybe not, most of you have heard a little bit of my, my story, but the long story short of it is I though I approached the game the way that I purchased the game today, which is kind of like, ah, this could be the last day and last time I ever get to touch a soccer ball. So I'm just going to give my all that luckily that mindset luckily led to me being getting to a chance where I had the opportunity to be seen by some college coaches in the last game of the last turn, minimize youth soccer career. So I got lucky to get recruited. It was kind of a you know, at the Nick of time, the very last by the skin of my teeth, right? And when I got to the professional level, when like seventh grade sending out email or not emails sending out written letters, this was before email, I think he was writing out email.

Quincy Amarikwa (15:29):

I keep seeing emails. He was writing out actual letters, write letters in the mail, sending them to coaches, having them attend to his games and stuff like that. And because he was proactive and he worked very closely with his mom to, to attend as much in practice, as much as possible. He ultimately had those recruitment offers at the, by his senior year high school. Once I learned that and understood how vastly different our processes were, I was like, listen, that needs to be a book. People need to know about this. And we have we've got the perfect, you know, peanut butter and jelly combo, right? Ross did it exactly how you, you should, if you want to greatly maximize your opportunities and chances to get to the college level. And I did it the way that you absolutely shouldn't, if you want to have the least lowest chance of it happening.

Quincy Amarikwa (16:16):

And since we had those two perspectives that book is kind of what, what launched perfect soccer and subsequently all the, the be pro training programs, the perfect soccer match ball, the soccer goals, skills Academy, man, everything time management sheet, the, the perfect cyber team members' area all of our books that this show, you know, all the shows, everything that you guys have seen, all the stuff that I've been learning over time, the soccer resume templates, the CV stuff, all that has been the result of just continuing, continuing to learn and continuing to share what I've learned over the course of my career. And the conversations I've had with the hundreds of teammates that I've had over the years for the many, many teams I've played for over the course of my career. So that's that's kind of, that's what inspired it inspired the creation of it.

Quincy Amarikwa (17:13):

And you guys, the community is the, the, the motivation, I guess, for lack of better term for keeping it going right. It's it's you guys that keep showing up every week sharing your feedback shouting out the brand, sharing it with your friends and family purchasing products, buying yourself some merge, getting some, getting hats. T-Shirts everything, our training programs all of it, you know, cause you guys know an investment in perfect soccer is an investment into yourself and the money that we eat that we generate here and the attention that we write, we use to reinvest in ourselves and improve ourselves. Cause the MSL mindset, just the mindset you need to accomplish your goals. If we help you guys accomplish your goals, we'll we believe we'll we'll accomplish ours because our goal is to help you accomplish yours. So if you accomplish yours, we've accomplished ours. We want that positive, that positivity feedback loop everybody. But yeah, let's see. Let's see, let's see grooming with Quincy. Yeah. Maybe a little segment of the show. We can get a little graphic up for the grooming with Quincy. Oh, let's see.

Quincy Amarikwa (18:30):

You should start. Julian said you should start posting on tick tock more. It's a great way to get a lot of recognition for the perfect soccer brand. I agree. I think we need to be more active over there. I've just been extremely extremely occupied, right? And focused on a lot of the organizational stuff with the black players for change you know, building the organization in conversations and negotiations with potential partnerships and, and planning and building for what we, what we know will become a very massive influential organization. So no context, Dylan who has a tick tock following we'll be heading and leading our perfect soccer gamer division of the brand. So maybe I need to speak with him a little bit about helping us get our take top game popping. But that is a good, that is a good idea. That is a good shout out.

Quincy Amarikwa (19:30):

Let's see. Spam it, John Hollinger what's going on. MSL, mustache shaving league. Yo, the community's got jokes, but I love it. Hashtag all caps. Snowcap guys. We might be starting too many trends. Psych, no such thing as too many. We out here, we all here, trendsetting, if you trend set and you gotta keep setting the trends you fool, I influence the all cap, no cap dread. Yo. When we were out here market makers who, and you're tuned in, you're dialed in that's right. You can influence the market and start a trend and we can see how far this wave can go. So yo, shout out. I missed where he's influenced. Like I said, we're a community that's here to ride that MSL wave together. You know he a mustache shaving Lee. Yeah. I'm catching up to you guys is all caps out here.

Quincy Amarikwa (20:35):

That's a, that's an all cap, no cap. There's no jug. The mustache shaving league is a special episode, episode 82 to ask a soccer pro show mustache shaving league. I'm your host baby, baby thin mustache Quincy Amarikwa. And today we edged up my mustache, but you must ask me some questions guys. What are some questions we've got out here? Got you. So George said we gave up on him because the product the has not been great plus COVID I understand, I understand probably on a pretty deep level that most people don't understand just from direct experience.

Quincy Amarikwa (21:25):

I don't blame you. No context. Dylan said got a win at all costs, man. I'm looking forward to seeing some of the streams, bro. When are we, when are we up and running? John knows, John knows teamwork equals Dreamworks soccer dad for life. Welcome. Yeah, you need more ticktock dance videos. I get, I guess I got to get on the tick tock wave guys. There you go. Okay. Let Donnie pine take over. Take doc. Those are good ideas. Maybe I need to get a couple of the guys in a couple of pro guys to kind of manage the account, make some stuff and do that. That's not a bad, that's not a bad shot, everybody. I like that. Steve, let's start. I don't know. Maybe, maybe once we know for sure what that level of influence is at, or maybe you guys making me think guys are making me think.

Quincy Amarikwa (22:29):

And one of the things that I was thinking of, so Connor Johnson has been with the brand for like, I want to say over a year and a half now he's helped me to get our soccer resume. Our soccer resume our, our, what do we call it? I was going to say talk a resume program, but it's be pro program, our soccer resume services up and running. So we, we appreciate you guys AE your own custom perfect soccer skills.com soccer CV with a highlight edited, highlight video logo stats, all the information you need in sending over to perspective Scouts and coaches. And I think what we also talked about doing was on top of the, the service of putting that together and hosting your, your page. So you can promote that. For those of you who purchase at least starting out for the mail, I'll limit it to like the first 50. Cause you know, just in case we end up getting too many, the first 50 I'll personally review your highlight tape and your, your yeah, your submitted content and stuff. And I'll give you feedback on your resume and give you kind of some, some feedback as to how you can improve it. Things that you should focus on just on the soccer side, as well as maybe your resume side.

Quincy Amarikwa (23:46):

So I'll limit that to 50 people. But I think what we will do here moving forward is with that service, I'll always make sure a pro player, an ex pro player or current pro player reviews your resume and gives you some feedback, real time feedback as well. So if you guys are needing or wanting to get that done, I recommend you. W we have that it should be perfectly soccer skills.com/soccer CV. I'll make that link eventually. So you guys can see it. George, all right, let's see, George. I think we got you for, let's see, yo, what's going on, man?

Caleb (24:32):

Really nothing.

Quincy Amarikwa (24:33):

Yeah. What have you been up to you?

Caleb (24:36):

Playing soccer. I've two questions for you.

Quincy Amarikwa (24:40):

Okay. Let's go for it. What do you got?

Caleb (24:44):

One is what's the best way to recover after soccer practice?

Quincy Amarikwa (24:51):

Ooh, I think you'll like this one. Okay. So I'm going to give you a good one. So a great immediate one for recovery within 15 minutes of soccer practice is, a glass of chocolate milk. Okay. I know you liked that one. That one's good one. And then if you can do foam roll or ice bath, I love that we've got the MSLs.

George (25:16):

Yo Quincy, I got the tightest MSL shirt that he's got in here. I got an extra medium that's now, bro.

Quincy Amarikwa (25:23):

That's an, that's an extra large, you're just a big strong man. And you're, I don't know. I almost had to cut the sleeves off this bad boy. The mental strength is too strong, brother. Hold on. Caleb's got one more question. Oh, it's all good, man. Okay, so what's the what's the next question? Question. Number two.

Caleb (25:46):

What's the best skill to do for defending?

Quincy Amarikwa (25:49):

Oh, okay. Oh for defending. Okay. I was thinking offensive. Okay. you, you want to delay, so you want to cut angles. You want to cut down angles so that you make the play predictable for your teammates to come and help double down. So a lot of defenders want to go and win the ball themselves, you know, but if you overcome it, there's a chance that the offensive guy can get past you. Right. And then the rest of your team has to recover to try to recover behind you. Whereas if you can cut off angles and, and kind of almost like have you seen when people are hurting cattle and they're running them into a small, into a lane where it's very predictable. Yeah. Think about defending like that. Think of the players as cattle. And you're trying to lead them into slaughter, right. Is where you're kind of leading them to, but that's where you want your defender, your other defenders to come in and help.

George (26:46):

You're gonna tell the seven year old, lead them to the slaughter?

Quincy Amarikwa (26:51):

That's what I'm saying. I was like, ah, you know what, Hey, but it's the killer. It's the killer instinct is the killer mindset out there. It's already out there. Yeah. If he's, if he's a defender, you gotta have that, that killer's mindset. That killer mentality, you know, Oh, I missed being out there. I had a good time, you know, with the, the community was something that I really enjoyed out there. Especially getting the chance to catch the game with you guys as a fan. That was fun.

George (27:19):

That was awesome. And you know, we gave up our season tickets and we're talking to our ticket guy and he was like, why, why do you guys not want to come back? And I said, COVID, but really it's because outside of you and you know, maybe Griffin and Donovan Pines, nobody else has been really engaging. Like the players, they just run off the field or whatever, like after the game. And this was even before COVID and we're like, Hey, how you doing? Yep. They're outta here.

George (27:48):

I'm like, Hey, Hey, we're fans, you know, we're here supporting you brothers new. And I'm like,

Quincy Amarikwa (27:54):

I understand. Hopefully, hopefully they'll learn. You know, we're trying, it's, it's tough. I think. Cause I can, you know, it is. I tell you guys, you can see both sides of it. Sometimes it can be difficult as a pro to maybe face the fans. But at the end of the day, that's what that's, what's paying your, you know, your salary. That's what, that's what you're out there for to kind of entertain. So when it's a catch 22, I can see both sides, but that's where I still say it's different to, Hey, the fans that's that's, that's why we're out here. That's why we're playing.

George (28:29):

So we'll get them to kick their butts in gear, you know? Well, I think also with COVID they lost a lot of season tickets and they said my, my rep said not as many as you might think.

George (28:40):

And I'm like, well, you know, we, we really enjoyed it. We used to really enjoy it. And then it just, you know, we, we tried to bring back the, bring back Quincy campaign, but they brought in, they brought in a bunch of other dudes that are overpaid and they're not playing very well.

Quincy Amarikwa (28:55):

So, you know, well the bring back Quincy campaign, that's a, that's an expensive campaign to run. You know, you got a lot, you're going up against,

George (29:07):

We still got our Amarikwa jerseys. We wore them in protest. We're like, Hey!

Quincy Amarikwa (29:11):

I always loved that. And I appreciate the sport guys. And I appreciate you calling in and asking the questions. I think our special guest of the hour has just arrived. I don't know if you guys saw who that is. We got Justin Morrow, executive executive director of Black Players for Change, joining in and will hopefully be dropping some knowledge on you guys and given his his mentality and stuff. But I appreciate the support guys. Thank you very much. I appreciate you calling in and if there's ever any questions and stuff that I can answer or help with, please, please don't hesitate to reach out.

George (29:51):

Yeah. Thank you, Quincy. Thank you for taking our live and I'll leave you with one more. Look at the extra medium.

Quincy Amarikwa (30:00):

I love that. Alright guys.

George (30:03):


Quincy Amarikwa (30:07):

Yeah. I love that. Thanks so much for calling in you two or the whole family. All three of you. Let's see, just in, there we go. Oop, thank you. Sure. We're good.

Justin Morrow (30:28):

Oh, what's up?

Quincy Amarikwa (30:29):

What's going on brother?

Justin Morrow (30:31):

How are you doing my man?

Quincy Amarikwa (30:32):

Uh you know, just just enjoying life bro. Taking advantage, taking advantage of this time. I know you've got plenty of it. You're currently on quarantine, correct?

Justin Morrow (30:43):

Yes, sir. That's got about five more days left. So my most there,

Quincy Amarikwa (30:48):

What so was, is 15 days,

Justin Morrow (30:51):

14, 14 days.

Quincy Amarikwa (30:53):

Alright. Well, okay. Before I jumped straight into it, I want to say thank you very much for topping in man. Joining in. I'm excited to have you for those of you who don't know, we've got none other than black players for change executive executive director Justin Morrow.

Justin Morrow (31:07):

I love how you introduce me now, executive director of Black Players for Change. Not defender Toronto FC anymore.

Quincy Amarikwa (31:18):

No, that's what I said. I said, you just got yourself an elevated title. So we're going to go with, we go with your elevated title and then obviously that's, what's kind of in the news cycle. That's what the main thing going on. But more importantly, we've got you're in year 10, right?

Justin Morrow (31:35):


Quincy Amarikwa (31:35):

Okay. Year 11. Yeah. MLS pro Justin Morrow current defender for Toronto FC.

Justin Morrow (31:41):

We were in the locker room together for a couple of months in San Jose.

Quincy Amarikwa (31:45):

Yes we were. And I was gonna say fun fact. Justin was a rookie 2010, 2010. Cause it was the first couple months of 2010 rookie season San Jose before I ended up getting traded to Colorado.

Quincy Amarikwa (32:03):

Good times, man. I remember I remember you and you, Beitashour. And Ike, Oh man, this story w one, I, I mean, I could have plenty of stories of like this, this guy who would just show up whenever he wanted to just my cross country for games and stuff, but.

Justin Morrow (32:23):

Flying back and forth from Wake Forest, finishing up school,

Quincy Amarikwa (32:26):

It was amazing. It was amazing. But, we're not here to talk about Ike, we're here to talk about you, break down a little bit of your mentality, get an understanding of what makes you tick here on the #AskASoccerPro Show. We break down the MSL, which is the mental strength league. And we we'd like to better understand the qualities that we believe are necessary to becoming successful both on and off the field. And I don't, I don't think it's a coincidence that you make it to year 11, right? As you have without having learned a, a couple of tricks of the trade. So maybe let's start with your rookie season a little bit as to kind of how'd you get to San Jose and what, what did you, what did you learn in that, that first year? Cause since then you've been with Toronto for eight years now.

Justin Morrow (33:18):

This is my seventh year. Yeah. I was four years in San Jose and then seven years out here.

Quincy Amarikwa (33:25):

All right. So what how'd you get to San Jose and what did you learn while you're there?

Justin Morrow (33:30):

So I got drafted by San Jose in 2010 coming out of Notre Dame. So I had just finished college. I luckily enough finished in three and a half years. So my degree was done. I was ready to finish school, packed up my stuff, headed out to San Jose, which was very exciting for me because I grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, nowhere near the water except for beautiful Lake Erie, which is not that beautiful, but that's another story. So I was really excited to go get out to California and see what it was all about, living in a different part of the country, a different culture and everything. And I just try to embrace it as much as I could. I was still transitioning from an attacking player to defending player. At that point, I had only played 11 college games as a left back and I got drafted as a left back. So really that year was learning about the position, more learning, what it took to compete in major league soccer and learning from some really, really important mentors in my career Ramiro Corellis was there that year and then further on Bobby combi.

Quincy Amarikwa (34:47):

Got you. Yeah, I remember sir. Bobby combi. Alright. Oh, that's interesting. So you said you were, you were an attacking player in college. What position was w what, what position did you play?

Justin Morrow (34:58):

Yeah, I'm slowly, I've slowly moved back. I'm going to end up at goalie pretty soon. I started as a striker as a youth player played winger most of the high school and last 11 games, but my college career.

Quincy Amarikwa (35:17):

Okay. Did you see that transition? Did you see that happening? Like what, what, okay. But this is great because this comes down to mentality and I liked this, so let's, let's dive into this a little bit. So when you're starting out as a striker, right. It's confidence. You're the man, you're the main man. He score the goals and stuff. Yeah. How did that transition happen was more like kicking and screaming or was this kind of a smooth transition of like, alright. Yeah. Okay. We're moving our way all the way back. So what was that for you? You know, by the time that it happened in college,

Justin Morrow (35:49):

I was really, really happy with it because I was kind of flourishing right away in the position. I was always a good player in college and effective player, but as a winger, I wasn't getting the goals and assists that you need to be recognized on national level to really get that jump to, to MLS in the, in the higher leagues. And so when I switched back to, to left back, I, I felt like immediately I was making more of an impact on the game. I was very solid, totally. And I was contributing defending for sure one-on-one defending and, and spacing and, and specifically going from the, from the collegiate level to the, to the MLS level, the professional level there was a big difference in, in terms of attacking players that you're facing and, and how skillful they are. I think for the most part, I was athletically there in college. Like that, that part I was fine with. I was at the professional level, but just the skill wise and, and in game awareness and situational awareness, those are the biggest things in terms of the defending that, that I had trouble with.

Quincy Amarikwa (37:06):

Got you. No, I like that. Okay. So let's kind of break that down a little bit more. So that's kind of the crux of the show, right? Getting a, getting a certain level of understanding and then really dive in down so we can hopefully help the audience better improve their game and just get a better appreciation for the game and learn the different aspects of the game, the nuance of it. So when you're using the term spatial awareness, right, and your, your, the skillful, the skillfulness of the opponents that you're up against at the less acquisition help, help me better understand what that means. So skillful is just, you know, kind of that's a relative term, but when, when you're saying skillful, what, what sets somewhat, what is someone who is skillful able to do to you that someone who's not, is able not to do?

Justin Morrow (37:52):

Yeah. When you, when you talk about spatial awareness, really knowing where you're at on the field and, and what that dictates to you in terms of what you're doing is what I'm talking about. So if you're, if you're defending higher up the pitch, you might defend differently differently than if you're getting close to your own 18 specifically as a as a defender you're, you're defending differently, you have more urgency and the way that you're closing someone down the angles that you're taking when you're on top of your own 18, versus when you're at half field maybe at half field, you have more license to, to step in and make a tackle, whereas around your own box, you have to be really cognizant of potentially giving up a penalty kick. Also if that relates to what you're saying and how skillful the opponent is in that at the professional level, there's a lot of guys that can make you miss they're they're, they they're deceptive. And, and, and I think we're seeing that a lot and, and major league soccer right now that that level is getting higher and higher. And so knowing your opponent is very important as well.

Quincy Amarikwa (39:08):

No, that's awesome. I like that. Cause you saw a young I saw you joined in a little bit just a little bit ago and you saw a young defender up and coming defender came in and asked him questions. He talked a little bit about leading the attacking plater players to to slaughter, right. Making them very predictable break, putting them into spaces. So you can allow for your, your other defenders to help you double down to make way more predictable. Yeah. What what has been a focus of yours in terms of, of development over the year? What's something that you feel has always been, has held true to, to us as a, as a development from the, from your mental aspect of the game over the years?

Justin Morrow (39:53):

A mental standpoint is that I don't, I don't, I respect everyone and I don't take anything for granted. I think a lot of guys get in trouble when they think that they've had a lot of success. Maybe they might think that they're better, that they didn't, they are they might get ahead of themselves. I just try and humble myself and know that I always have something to learn. And that on any day, especially in a major league soccer, someone can teach you a lesson. If you go with that mindset every time you'll know that you're going to give your best. And, and on some days you might, you might get beaten. But you know, if you get in your, all on that day, you can live with that, because that means that that person across from you is just better, better than you on that day. But it wasn't because you weren't giving an honest, true effort. I love that. That's important.

Quincy Amarikwa (40:44):

Oh, I love that. That's great. That's really good. I see, we've got some defenders in here that are that are, are liking, are liking that that mindset, that mentality was, is that something that you feel is just kind of been innate to you or were, did you have some humbling experiences that made that more true or has it kind of, or has it been a combination of, of both kind of like, how, how has, how did that come, come to be?

Justin Morrow (41:10):

Yeah, I think it was more experiences. Just, just you know, so my, my first real year as a starter was in 2012, when we had such big success with San Jose and I was playing every game. I was all star that year. I broke into the national team and, and things were going very well. The following year, we sorry, at the end of 2012, we didn't we didn't finish the year, the way we wanted to, we want supporter shield. We lost the LA galaxy and the playoffs. We basically lost in, in one half. And you know, we went down there, we'd beat them in their field, which was like a big deal. We came back to San Jose and gave up three goals in one half. And that was it.

Quincy Amarikwa (41:54):

You remember that was it Victor Bernardis scored the free kick goal in LA and LA and then Robbie Keane scored like a couple in the first half

Justin Morrow (42:05):

At home at bookshelf. Yeah. Yup. Okay. So we had this, we had this amazing gear. We ended on kind of a sour note, even though we won the supporter shield and the team stayed the same going in 2013. So everybody expected more of the same and that year just really didn't go well, according to, to anyone's plans and, and what we saw happening for the team. We struggled very mightily in the beginning of the year. And by the time we were into the summer, we were so far down that we couldn't even make up the ground to get back into the playoff picture. And that year just taught me so many lessons about what it means to be in the moment. And knowing that, especially in professional sports, nobody cares about what you've done. It's about what are you doing for me now? And when you talk about fatality, you learn that mentality as a professional right away.

Quincy Amarikwa (42:54):

Love that. So why, why do you think, why do you think a player like yourself is able to understand that and survive long enough to make it to you to pass year 10? Where, where most others fall short? Yeah. I think a lot of guys have

Justin Morrow (43:12):

Humbling experiences like that. You know, every single player in their career faces their own challenges, their own setbacks. That was a personal setback of mine the way that year went. But I just, I just doubled down and, and really focused on why I had a year that was undesirable a lot of introspection. It's really what pushed me through. You know, I had a desire to, to prove that that year wasn't going to define me the 2012 year wasn't going to define me and that my career was going to be much longer than that. And, and, and the longevity of my career was going to be what defined me.

Quincy Amarikwa (43:53):

I love that. That sounds like a, a three S's of self-awareness shout right there. So what we talked about here, so the first three S's of, of the first three steps of the, of our philosophy, the MSL mentality here is the three S's of self awareness, self honesty, self initiative, self accountability, and we practice a lot of stuff election as a group here. It sounds like you did your own version of that Def dirt, especially during that. And after that 2013 season, I'm thinking about it more and I'm going okay from that San Jose team, you're still playing. Ike's still, Steve still playing the team,

Justin Morrow (44:34):

Wando and Shea,

Quincy Amarikwa (44:36):

Wondo and Shea are still playing.

Justin Morrow (44:37):

Playing Mexico. He plays for Cruz as well. He's played on a very long time, very long time.

Quincy Amarikwa (44:44):

Okay. What, why do you think, what about, what about that time or those groups? What, what experience does do, does that group of guys collectively have that? Or is it just luck? Like what, what do you think it is?

Justin Morrow (45:00):

The, I mean, there's a conversation there about how much of the team was personality versus skill. I think we had actually a very high skill level and, and people will say that it was more about personality. So that's another conversation for a different time, but I'll, I'll just, I'll just run with the theme that it was about personality. For me, it taught me how much personality can play an influence in the game overall, not just individually, but as a team. And you see teams in the current day that play a funky style, or they play differently than their opponents. And it's all about the collective of the team. And that is what is very important for successful winning teams that maybe they not play the prettiest, but they believe that they can win. And they all agree on what it takes to win. And as a coach, those are probably the two hardest things to get across. You have to make your team believe that they can win. And every single player on the field on the bench has to know what it takes to win and have the same mindset. And, and those are the teams that I've seen be successful. And like I said, there's always the skill and talent piece as well.

Quincy Amarikwa (46:15):

Awesome. I love that. And it looks like everyone in the comments section is loving that as well to you the same that Missy JMO hi Justin, we met last summer. I'm becoming a right-back. So this information is great for me. Best San Jose backline ever 2012.

Justin Morrow (46:38):

Oh, no, there was some good San Jose teams won some championships, but we got one trophy.

Quincy Amarikwa (46:44):

Nah, we don't, we don't need to talk. We don't worry about those. The second time around PTR man said solid TFC player, consistent player day in and day out. So it looks like you got yourself a lot of, a lot of a diehard fans out here, man. But let's see J D J D w a R D underscore go, Sounders FC as Justin, as Justin outside of 2017, which season was your personal

Justin Morrow (47:11):

Best? 2016 say I think a lot of people would remember me from the San Jose team from 2012, but in 2016, I was, I was playing left back in four, four, two, and I had five and four cysts. And I was, I was out that was a pure left back role. Like I, I was just getting up and down the field. The team made it to MLS cup that year. I played like 30 something games. I didn't get tons of recognition that year, but I felt like I was one of the best wide players in the league at that point. In 2017 I scored eight goals, but I was playing, I was playing more winger like I was playing wingback and because our team had the ball, a lot of the games, I was able to stay higher up the field.

Justin Morrow (48:05):

I had three really strong center backs behind me, which meant that I only had to make recovery runs very so often. And, and because I had such talented players like Sebastian GME go and Josie out the door John dyno, Sorio Victor Vasquez. I was able to get into the attack and score a lot of goals. But in 2016 I was, I was playing pure, left back and I still got a lot of goals in assist. And then, and to me that really stuck out as a year that wasn't on both for me.

Quincy Amarikwa (48:37):

Love that. No, that's awesome. And yeah, man. So I know, I know we only got you for a little bit here and I want to be, I want to be mindful of your time. Let's I've got one more question for you and I'll, I'll let you run. But thank you for stopping by and we'll keep it pretty casual. So TFC day, we have to underscore asked you who's the best dancer at the club.

Justin Morrow (48:59):

Yeah, for sure. It used to be Jay Chapman just shipped out to Miami, but our Canadian guys are pretty good dancers and, and he had to be at the top of the list. You guys always dancing in the locker room. Okay.

Quincy Amarikwa (49:16):

Alright. Well, that's fair. That's a great way to wrap it up, Justin, bro. I appreciate, I appreciate you stopping by San WhatsUp sharing a little bit of your insight and your experience. It's dope. It's dope to have seen your career over the last decade, man. You know what I mean? Still seeing you do it. I hope to see you to do it for 10 years more, but I don't know that.

Justin Morrow (49:35):

I don't know. Yeah. I don't know if the wheels are lasting that long.

Quincy Amarikwa (49:41):

Hopefully everyone who's listening to this now or in the future, make sure you you shame and guilt trip Justin into playing for another 10 more years. He won't, he can't help it. If, if you guys all force them to stick around for longer, but Justin, thanks, man. I appreciate it. I've had a great time building the building black layers for change with you. We've been having a lot of conversations probably in these last eight weeks then than we have retired 10 years before this. I'm sure you've, I'm sure you've gotten sick of talking to me. So I'm, I'm more, I'm more than happy to hear. I'm more than happy that you're able to join in on the live and share a bit of your insight with us, man.

Justin Morrow (50:18):

Of course, man. Anytime I appreciate it.

Quincy Amarikwa (50:21):

Awesome brother. We'll be speaking here.

Justin Morrow (50:23):

Alright, see you guys

Quincy Amarikwa (50:25):


Quincy Amarikwa (50:28):

Yo big shout out to Justin for joining in that was dope. Hopefully you guys got some great insight insight from Justin from a decades long and you know, sinking San Jose. So I played in San Jose and I also played in TFC, but I only played with Justin while in San Jose. By the time I by the time I got to TFC, I think it was before Justin had gotten there. So TFC daily underscores that Justin is my hero. Make sure you drop a drop and I'm in your head emoji on Justin's most recent post and tell them thanks for joining in on the show, everybody. But as we wrap things up here, we've got about eight more minutes before Instagram will kick us off. If you guys are spamming that heartburn, cause you're loving it.

Quincy Amarikwa (51:27):

I love to see that see spam heart buttons. And as we posted it yet, but speaking of soccer, CV services that we've got now with Connor I was I was updating my, my soccer CV and I saw the goal that was at the bottom when I was with the Chicago fire. So I'd, I'd record it so you can see, let's see, this is from Hunter jumper. Then this came from Santos, boom, little boy, yo good times back in the day with the Chicago fire, you know? Oh, let's get louder. Is it loud now?

Quincy Amarikwa (52:32):

Yeah, so I was, I was looking at that. I was looking at that and I was going like, man, we gotta do, I gotta, I gotta pull out some of the old, some of the old goals and share them with you guys. I was going like, man, man, lots of goals scored over the course of a 10 year career. Lots of games, reserve games exhibitions, friendlies Joe Jackson, Quincy with the bike. That's right. Hey, so scooter underscore blue car said, Hey, I took the picture of you doing the triple jump after you scored the goal in your second stint with the quakes, shout out scooter blue car. I I think, yeah, I posted that. I posted that picture to my Instagram triple jump celebration. That's gotta be the first time the triple jump celebrations ever been done. Like in the history of soccer. I have no, like I have no frame of reference to even make that claim, to know if that's true or not, but I'm just going to, I'm going to say that that's true. And that's a fact and I'm the first to do it. I'm the only one ever to do it. So yeah. Trent said transcending, all caps, no cap hashtag all caps, no cap. You guys know what it is, but scooter, thanks for that image bro. I appreciate it.

Quincy Amarikwa (53:46):

Yeah, you used it for your profile pic for awhile. Yup. That's what I'm saying. I know I posted it on Instagram. The Luca said who you got to win it all in. MLS is back. What's the final. Who's the finals it's who who's it? Philly verse. Who Quincy inmate. When am I getting my hoodie? Dylan, did we send Dylan? I don't know. I dunno if we already placed your order or not Dylan. If we did, I do know that because of COVID a lot of our suppliers or our backlog to stuff, if we haven't make sure you reach out to Katie and ask her so we can make sure that it gets submitted. Cause it does take a bit longer with the COVID stuff. So I know we gotta get you some of your perfect soccer merchant and I think a hat is what we had talked about last, but I made sure we're making sure that you got that PS.

Quincy Amarikwa (54:40):

What does it PS4 or three? Connor said live with Zlatan. I mean, we've been broadcasting rent-free out of Don's head for like almost a year now. So I'm angry. It's not the union. Orlando has shocked me. TFC said Orlando shocked me. I mean, when you're in your home market, you have a very large advantage, especially for a tournament like that in the humidity and heat. Doesn't necessarily surprise me with that, but it does not to take anything away from what they're doing. You still gotta show up and perform and do well, but it is, it is an advantage. Yeah, polka said Orlando has been amazing this tournament.

Quincy Amarikwa (55:34):

Andrea said check out my highlights. I mean, if you're submitting them via that contact, we get you in contact with Connor is a game going on right now guys. Is that, what is that guy? What are you guys talking about? Is the finals right now? What's today? I don't know. I think we got like two minutes, August 6th. I thought the finals were on the eighth, but, but if not. Oh good. Let's see. Let's see. Let's see. But yeah, we've got two minutes here, everybody. I want to thank everybody for joining in on today's live. Big shout out to Justin moral for joining in and sharing a bit of his experience in man, 11 years, 11 years. It's not, it's not easy. It's not easy to accomplish 11 years guys. It is not easy. It it takes a lot of hard work dedication and a certain mentality to maintain yourself and stay relevant for, for that long.

Quincy Amarikwa (56:42):

And I, I think it's, it's interesting to learn, like even just for me to learn that Justin started out as a Ford, made his way to left mid and then ultimately landed at left back and found himself getting some time with the us men's national team. So hopefully those of you who are listening here live today, and those who listen in the future on the podcast station of your choice or on a YouTube or a perfect soccer skills.com. I hope that this can be of help to you in some way. Do you start at post live watching the game? Do you have time post live on what maybe what I'll do is I'll go live on the mental strength league account after this, or let me, I don't know. I don't know. Actually I watched the game on my phone, so cause I have it that ESPN and stuff.

Quincy Amarikwa (57:39):

So I gotta set up where it's at, but if I'm going to go live, I'm not saying I'm going to you, but if I do go live, I'll go live on the mental strength league account. After this to watch the game for a little bit, see if I can find it online is CMOs regular season coming back next month. I think I'm hearing rumblings that it went or I think they're trying to bring it back and look markets, but I don't know if they're going to do like a, another prolonged tournament style or something to that effect. So it will be on the lookout for that. Connor said 90 with the goal. So I'm assuming that game's going on right now. So I'm going to go and try and catch some of the game. But thank you to everybody who joined in for this week. It was a good episode. All caps, no cap is a thing now. So I appreciate everybody who's joining in. I'll see everybody next week. Same time, same place, 6:00 PM. PST 9:00 PM EST as always. And maybe we'll see. I'm always, so guys, thanks for joining in and as always, I mean your head, see ya.