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May 23, 2023 46 mins
He's been a teammate, player or business associate with some of the biggest names in sports: Peyton Manning, Tony Dungy, John Elway, Tiger Woods and Arnold Schwarzenegger to name a few. Throughout Brad Pyatt’s football career he networked and learned from the best of the best. It started at Arvada West High School when he played under a brand-new high school coach named Dave Logan and the Wildcats won a state championship in 1997. The wide receiver was heavily recruited and opted for Kentucky under Hal Mumme where the “Air Raid” offense was popularized and eventually copied by many college and NFL teams. While Brad made receptions look easy at Kentucky, the game wasn’t easy on his body and he missed Colorado. He finished his college career with a year at UNC in Greeley where he soaked up knowledge from legendary head coach Kay Dalton.

Brad caught on with Indianapolis as an undrafted free agent in 2003 and stayed with the Colts for three seasons, again learning and watching some of the best players and coaches. Unfortunately, the injuries piled up in the NFL just like they did in college. After leaving the Colts, he played a couple seasons with Elway’s Colorado Crush Arena team and was done… with football.

After football, the business side of Brad took over and he started MusclePharm which grew to a $170 million a year business with big-name endorsers. A couple years before he left to start more business ventures, Brad became the head coach of his alma mater in 2014. When he interviewed for the job, he presented a 10-year plan to bring A-West football back to what it was when he played. It’s working.

Hosted by Susie Wargin
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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
That was just a really challenging andthat was the first time I really had
injuries and being away from my folksand friends I got was really, like
I said, mental health. Itwas a challenge, right. I remember
times in my dorm room like Idon't know how I'm gonna make it through
this year. I don't know ifI'm ever going to play football again.
In my sophomore year, I thoughtI was done. I started looking at
like doing something different in college,going to be a vet, whatever it

was. I was like, I'mkind of done in football. Welcome to
Cut, Traded, Fired, Retired, a weekly podcast where I sit down
with professional athletes and coaches who telltheir stories about at least one of the
words in the podcast title. I'myour host, Susie Wargen. This episode's
conversation is with another Colorado native.You know, it's really fun that we
have so many and it seems likeno matter where their college and pro roads

lead, many of them come backto their roots. Brad Pyatt has done
more than just returned to his roots. He's actively trying to grow them.
Brad was a two time All Americanas a wide receiver at our Vetta West
in the late nineties, he hadfifty some colleges knocking on his door and
opted to go to Kentucky. Aftera few years with the Wildcats and a
few injuries, he came back toColorado for a year in Greeley at u

n C. After college, helanded with the Colts as an undrafted free
agent. He had some highlights,but again dealt with the injury bug and
retired from football in two thousand andeight. Then his business career began.
Brad started Muscle Farm, which grewinto a one hundred and seventy million dollar
corporation. And that wasn't and isn'tthe only one as for those roots.

In twenty fourteen, Brad got thehead coaching job at his alma mater and
made it his mission to get aWest football back to what it was when
he played. And it's working.He's taken his experiences with some pretty amazing
coaches and his business savvy to makefor some never dull reinventions, Ladies and
gentlemen. Brad Piot cut trading firedretired podcasts with Susie Wargin. Hey Brad

Piot, Hi, how are youdoing great? Thank you good? It's
good to see you. I don'tknow that we have seen each other in
forever. Yeah, it's been awhile for sure, a long long time.
So really fun to have you in. And you've got a cool story.
You're another one of our Colorado kidsthat have gone on to do all
kinds of things in college and NFLand beyond and now business wise. So

I love your reinvention story and youcontinue to reinvent yourself. Yeah, it's
been a journey for sure, stillat it, and that's what it's all
about. Life is always about reinventing. So let's go back. You were
born in our Vada group in ourVada, went to our Vada West.
What sports did you play growing up? How did football kind of become your
mainstay? I was pretty active andeverything I was basketball, baseball, and

football, And ironically, football wasprobably my third favorite sport, tell no
kidding, gout my junior in highschool, so baseball is probably my best
sport. And then I just gotburnt out with all the summer baseball and
my friends would be at pools andI'm like, I got BP practice at
eight o'clock for a four o'clock game. So I kind of just really wanted
to focus on football and ended upkind of going into that. But I

played every sport track, football,baseball, basketball, you name it,
I did it. And then footballyour junior year. What kind of clicked
then? I just knew, likebecause I was really good at basketball too,
but I knew I was limited inheight, so I was like,
I'm not probably gonna play there.And I had obviously Coach Logan as a
great mentor just love the atmosphere offootball baseball. I just you know,
I thought I had a chance toprobably play at the next level. Actually

led the state in hitting my sophomoreyear and stolen bases, but I just
I didn't want to go through thefarm system and I wanted to play grind
and talking to Coach Logan and people, it's like that atmosphere just football,
you just you know, it's ashort window of time in terms of season,
but there's nothing like that community,that culture, and it was just
something I just was passionate about.So I kind of doubled down and focused

on that in track my last twoyears and kind of kept going at it.
Would you run in track? Iran one hundred and two hundred.
You're pretty fast? Yeah, andit took a while for the coaches to
get me out because I just Ididn't really want to do that till my
junior year and coaches as who stillcoaches with UM. Coach Logan was my
track coach, and i As wasyour track coach. Oh jeez. I
loved Jim. I see him atthe Broncos games because he does stats for

Dave. Yeah, and he alwaystried to get me to do a four
hundred and I'm like, I'm sicktoday, I'm out, so I did
the one and two. So that'stoo funny. So you mentioned Dave Logan.
I know he's been a mentor toyou in your later years as well.
But what did it mean when hecame to that program and our Vada
West was where he started his coachingcareer, and then there was success while
you were there, when you guyswant a state championship in ninety seven.

You know, he just had away with kids and he still does.
Just his leadership is just obviously whathe did draft in three sports. I
mean the legacy of coach Logan andespecially in the Wheat Ridge, our Vada
area, everyone knew him, butI just he has a thing about him.
When you're around him, you don'twant to disappoint him. But he's
so kind in so many ways thatyou just want to do everything right for

him. He's hard on you,but in a way that is motivating.
He's not a yell er. He'llget on you, and you don't want
him to get on you, forsure, But he just has a way
about taking really good athletes and getthem to their potential. You know,
he's had a lot of great athletes, which a lot of coaches has,
but his specialty is maximizing these talentedathletes, which a lot of coaches don't.

And you know, he put somuch drive in me and so much
ability to see my goals through.And he just has a way to motivate
kids, and you just want toplay for him, and you know,
you'd ever want to disappoint him.There's so many coaches out there, and
if more coaches would realize what talentthey have and then adapt to the talent
as opposed to be so married totheir scheme, we'd have much better sports

out there. I think everybody hastheir schemes and what they want to do,
and Dave is magnificent. He's runningcollege and pro plays practically most of
the time. But he also understandsthe talent that he has, so he's
got to work his talent into thescheme. Yeah, and what I learned
from coach Logan, which is carriedinto my coaching style, is I probably
got four balls a game if Iwas lucky. But he did this thing
where he made you feel important enoughbut not selfish, where he got you

to buy in, where there wasno selfish players like in today's world.
I probably have got twenty balls agame. If I was coaching myself,
I probably give myself twenty balls.But knowing how he was able to use
we had some great running backs EricNellison, Will Rogers, and we had
some great receivers Mike Dern that playedD one, Jason Lucas. We had
a talented team, and he hada way to where the selfishness of athletes

he didn't allow. So if youask for more balls, you're probably getting
benched. So he just had away to Like with me, he's like,
go make plays on defense, goreturn a kick like he just got
you to without saying that. Like, you never complained about getting a ball
with coach Logan, You just youdid your job. I played defense,
offense, and special teams, soI knew, if we're going to run
the ball a lot, I'm gonnago get a play on defense. I'm
gonna go make an impact somewhere elsewhere. A lot of kids struggle with

that, and I think his leadershipjust he didn't really have to say it.
You just knew, like, don'tbe selfish. And I love that
about him because it taught me tokind of take that next step as an
athlete and really just own the game, like I don't care about stats,
Well, how do I have animpact on the game? So I gotta
return a kick with two minutes leftto win the game. He did that
with all his athletes, and Ithink today a lot of kids are losing

sight of that. That's team first, and that's why he wins consistently.
People don't realize his magic pill thathe gives these kids is really just the
buy and complete of the team atmosphere. Not one person is more important.
And we had some heck of athletescoming through a West cut lip Jason Lucas,
but no one was bigger than theteam. And he never lets you
be. That's the thing I justremember and I try to carry through to

my kids. It's like everyone hastheir own race, run your race,
and at the end of the day, as a team, we will get
there collectively. There's so much tobe said for that. Brad and I
notice it when either I interview aguy after a game or Nicola Yokich.
I think is a great example wheresomebody will bring up, hey, you
had a triple double by the thirdquarter, and he'll be like, really,
you know, he has no ideawhat he's done because he's out there

helping his team. And I'll tellguys, you know a stat that they
had and they're like, oh,I had no idea that was happening.
So it's amazing to me because youwould think, okay, everybody knows all
their stats, but if you don'thave that mentality and you have the team
mentality first, it's not your firstfocus. Yeah, And I think in
today's world, everything is such aeveryone thinks they have to have stats,
and it's yeah. I even tellmy players and parents like the coaches don't

go to max preps. College coachesdo not care about max Preps. And
I have parents like you didn't getmy son's stats updated and it's like,
we'll get him, but that doesn'tmatter. If you're winning football games and
your kids a player, they'll findhim. And that's something I just try
to emulate in my style with justpromoting team first and a lot of kids
to buy into that are the onesthat m being great. I had a

really good receiver Brady Witherspoon this yearthat went to UNC and he did everything
I asked. He reminded myself,me being coach Logan and him being me
kind of like, hey, thisis what you need to do to make
that next level. And he endedup being the best receiver in the state
this year, got a D onescholarship. But he did everything I asked,
didn't complain, didn't ask for moreballs, just did everything every day

and it paid off. That's whenathletes buy into their coaches. You'll see
how much more you get out ofit. Yeah. And parents, Yeah,
parents need to buy in as well. Very important. Okay, so
while you're at a West Brad you'rea two time All American, two time
All Colorado, two time All State, recruited by fifty some colleges. Yeah,
I mean, how did you pickKentucky? How did you narrow it

down and figure out. I mean, there's gonna be some that rise to
the top, but how did youfigure out where to go for that next
level? My goal was I wantedto be done my senior year. So
I graduated first semester my senior year. So I committed to Southern Cal my
junior year. That's where my dreamwas to go. I want to be
in, you know, the beach. I want to play for SC.
And I was kind of done withrecruiting and I was kind of glad because

it was really stressful. And thenas things progressed, Kentucky kind of came
in late and I wanted to playas a freshman. I didn't want to
sit. I believed I worked hardenough to you know, I just didn't
think they'd be good for me tosit and wait. I think I was
gonna have to sit at SC myfreshman year. So Kentucky came in.
It was basically get gill start asa true freshman. You know, I'm
playing in the SEC. They threwthe ball at the time. They had

Mummy, they had Hackett, theyhad Leech, they had all these coaches.
Now the everyone knows Sonny Dikes wasour GA, Like Wow, look
at the pedigree. So they werethe first air raid you know before now
it everyone runs it. So Iwas excited that you can get sixty balls
as a true freshman. I'm like, yeah, So they recruited me pretty
heavily, and I just ultimately itwas I could catch sixty balls as a
true freshman, and they threw theball and the offense was simple. So

that was kind of the reason Iwent there. So you switched, did
you decommit then? Yeah? Idecommitted from Was that hard? Yeah?
I was. You know, Iloved SC and I put a lot of
time into it. They'd put alot of time into me, but it
just at that point was it wasjust not the fit for me. Yeah,
And I liked Kentucky. I thoughtit was a different culture. It
was unique because I've never been tothe South, so I loved the horse

racing, you know, so itwas really cool cultural shock for me.
I liked it. It was asmaller city. I think if I went
to SC, I might I mighthave got a little lost looking back,
So I think Kentucky just just feltright going from our Vada to a place
like Kentucky as opposed to La Bigdifference. Yeah, huge difference. You
stay there for three years, youhave some injuries, and then you end

up going to UNC. Yeah whathappens during your time. I had a
really good, a good freshman year, um, you know, and then
I had some ups and downs withinjuries and just trying to fight through that.
And then Steve Cutlip called me myjunior year and he's like, hey,
I'm thinking about coming back to playfootball. And they didn't have the
portal obviously, so you can't.You can't just transfer and you can transfer
down and then you don't lose ayear. So I always wanted to play

back with him again. And Iwas kind of looking for next the next
step in my journey. And youknow, Kay Dalton was at UNC,
Marty English was there, and Idon't know if you don't remember Buck Rawlins,
if you ever heard of Buck BuckRawlins is like a legend in uncas
so my dad played for him.Oh, so we had a connection there.
So Buck called me. He's like, hey, we'll set up a
meeting, like we'll figure this out. And I really wanted to play with

Steve again. Thought that'd be agreat way to end my college career.
I still had dreams to play inthe NFL, and you know, my
dad played there, my mom wentto Unsea. So I thought it was
like, oh, you had alot of ties there, a great way
to and it's time to get outof the Kentucky was kind of. I
was kind of I needed to changeand it worked and I ended up meeting
my wife there, so it allit all worked out. That was meant
to be. Yeah, wow,when you went through your injuries in Kentucky,
I'm always curious about the injuries comingback and just how it affects the

mindset of a player. It's difficultfor anybody that has an injury, but
when that is your job and youneed to get back out and perform and
be healthy again. Mentally, Ithink it's just as tough. And especially
twenty years ago and nobody talked aboutmental health. It's so hard to come
back and deal with that. Yeah, I think football in general, I
use the phrase it's your worst boyfriendor girlfriend you've ever had. You're breaking

up every day. It's the emotionalride, and the injuries is like the
most oppressing thing. And my sophomoreyear I actually got a medical red shirt
and how to get surgery on myfeet and I got back from that,
but once you're out for a while, you kind of lose that momentum.
It might not be physically, butit's a mental engagement of athletes when you're
on the highest level, like thatnext drop is huge in terms of just

getting back. So that was justa really challenging and that was the first
time I really had injuries and beingaway from my folks and friends like that
was really, like I said,mental health, it was a challenge,
right. I remember times in mydorm room like I don't know how I'm
going to make it through this year. I don't know if I'm ever going
to play football again. In mysophomore year, I thought I was done.
I started looking at like doing somethingdifferent in college, going to be

a vet, whatever it was.I was like, I'm kind of done
in football. So I fought throughit. You know. Coach Logan was
always someone that I called and gaveme great advice, and you know,
I think that's important too, tobe able to rely on your folks and
your coach because they know you andsupport systems huge, you know. So
I just grind it through, andthat's kind of how we got to UNC
is like through conversations, I neededa fresh, clean start. The injuries

are real there. It's challenging.People don't realize with athletes, like you
know, whether they make a tonof money or they don't like it's a
real thing. It's mentally challenging,and it's one to get yourself back to
where you were when you knew youwere there and you still feel I'm not
there. So I think that's thehardest thing is recovering from injuries, getting
yourself back to where you were.Did you feel like you got back like
when you went to UNC, Didyou kind of feel like you were before?

Yeah. It took me about ayear and just kind of grinding through
it. And once I got toUNC, I was back in shape.
I felt good, kind of ajust a new look on life. And
you know, you still get injured, but that was the first time I
really went through it. So Ilearned how to get myself out of that
dark place to that next step toIt's a grind every day, wake up
train, go to the PT,stay focused, knowing that this is a

long term journey, and then overtime it goes by fast in your back
and you mentioned Kay Dalton. CoachDalton was there when you were there and
he just passed in augusta of twentytwenty two. But such a legendary coach,
what did you gain from him?Even just being with him for a
short amount of time. He wasawesome. I mean, Kay was nobs
like, brilliant man. Like I'vebeen around a lot of good coaches.

Offensively, the guy's top notch interms of his play call and his ability
to walk you through things. Hetaught me so much about football in terms
of offense and just the way hebroke things down. He was just a
brilliant mind. Again, he hadsimilar characteristics of coach Logan, where he
just he lets you know how whereyou need to be and you get there,
whether it's school, whether it's playingthrough an injury. Like you know,

I had a hamstring and I'd seehim. We'd go up for camp
with a West but six years agoand he'd like, how's your hamstring?
It still hurt? Like he wasfunny about that. So he challenged like,
hey, I don't need to hearyour injuries, Like if you're not
hurt, you're out, you're playing. So he was great because he just
motivated his players and such a greatguy and had a big iggmpact on my
life even though I was only therea year. So then you are just
there for a year and then it'stime for the NFL. You don't get

drafted. You go to the Coltsright as an undrafted free agent, and
you get on for three years.We had a pro day and I was
still I had one more year,but I wanted to go. I was
ready to, Like, after Iget myself through that injury, I just
knew, like, I'm back tothat level. I don't know how much
time you have left after this.So I ran out a pro day.
I was a junior and I endedup running I think I ran a four

two flat and a four two seven, and I slipped on my second one,
so I think I would have brokethat. Obviously, we were on
a track, so you're a realfaster, But that got everyone's attention.
Coach Dalton, being the relationships hehas, he was able to get me
out there quickly. The scallet's like, you're gonna want to watch this kid.
So ended up going through the supplementaldraft during the summer, and Coach
Dalton I spoke a lot about this, like, you probably get drafted pretty

high if you just stay another year. I'm like, Coach, I just
I need to go, Like Ijust, I don't care if it's undrafted
whatever. I want to get tothe NFL. So had supplemental draft,
had a bunch of scouts out there. Typically kids don't get drafted in that,
and Ransom really good times. Again, everyone's trying to measure you know
how they are. They're measuring everything. There's no way he ran this or
this. So then they put meon like a three day gauntlet. I

flew to green Bay, New York, Jets, and Indy and they all
wanted to see if I could runwhat I did. So I went to
Jets first ran I think a fourtwo nine there on Grass. Then they're
like, okay, he can play. My agents like you're not signing,
You're going to green Bay ran greenBay, did the same thing, and
the next day went to Indy.I think I ran a four to three
something in India, third day ina row. Tired when I got to

Indy. It was the same feelingI had when I made my decision to
go to Kentucky. I just coachDungee was out. I think on a
fishing trip or something. But BillPoland was there and I just felt right.
I just felt this is the organization, the way they treated you.
I've been around Coach Logan, CoachDalton, you just know, like the
good people, and I just feltthat culture was right for me, and

they they were ready to sign meright there. And I'm supposed to go
to Pittsburgh the next day, andI just told my agent, this is
it. I'm here. I wantto go here. You know. Obviously
Peyton mannings here, so kind oflike what my options are, so just
kind of just set there. CoachLogan actually was part of getting me that
look at Indy. I didn't knowthat, but he didn't tell me.
I heard through the grape vine.So he got me a look at Indy

and that ended up being where Ispent most of my career three years there.
So I didn't even think about thatconnection because he does have that connection
with Tony Yeah, and you knowTony Dungee. Again, like I've been
so fortunate, the coaches have beenaround men who can lead men. There's
not a lot of people can dothat. And just like I get goose
bumps, like I was so fortunateto have coach Logan, Coach Dalton,
coach Mummy, coach Dungee. Likejust those coaches, you learned so much,

not just about football, just people, like how do you treat your
staff, how do you treat yourco workers? How do you treat your
players? Like everyone from the trainerson, like the colts especially, Like
the trainers are the most important peopleon that team. If you bad mouth
them, you get cut. Likejust learning like the people that are putting
all the work and equipment managers,like the respect level that you have to
have, and being taught by thatwas really as a young man, Like

it's important to learn that you're notbigger than any of these people, right.
You learned from some of the bestCEOs and people forget that coaches are
CEOs of that football team. They'vegot their hands and everything and kind of
need to know everything that's going on. The good ones anyway. Yeah,
so you spend three years in Indie. You have some amazing returns. In
fact, you had a ninety yardreturn that first year. I think you

were there again Tampa Bay. Ithink it's the third largest comeback and I
was again. I kind of finallygot myself. I felt like after UNCS
back to where I was my freshmanyear mind wise in Kentucky, and I
was like, I finally got myselfhere, and I I felt invincible,
and I was leading in NFL andreturns. I think at Dante Hall and
I were up for about the samevotes for Pro Bowl that year. And

then I go to Miami and Ibroke my back and I ended up playing
three more years after that, butagain, I never was the same player
after that, like that could nevermentally take another hit because I was such
a I just ran into people.I always try to get two more yards.
And I remember the GM the Coltsafter my second years, like you
probably want to start getting out ofbounds. I'm like, that's not my

style, Like, well, youprobably won't last long. I was like,
well, I just don't know hownot too. So that was like
the hard thing trying to get backfrom that injury was mentally I like to
run hard and run into people.Getting out of bounds was not my thing.
So that was a hard thing forme. And I never ever got
back to that level again, andI knew I couldn't because after that back
injury, I was like I wasinvincible, like, and then I found

out I broke my back. YeahI'm not. And so that happened on
a kickoff return. Yeah, itwas a punt return against Miami Dolphins.
They carted me off. I feltso bad for my parents because they weren't
there. It's on TV and I'mlike trying to tell them they had me
like strapped down. I'm trying togive the thumbs up, like I'm fine,
Like I'm good, but it's precautionary. But I was fine. I
mean I had to wear this likeiron Man type vest that was like steel

for like six months. I wasso uncomfortable everywhere I went. But after
that, I recovered and I playedanother two and a half years after that.
What was the toughest injury for youto come back from? Because most
people would think you break your back, that's probably the toughest one. Mentally,
that was the toughest one. Ohit was physically, No, I
was fine. I actually felt becausethey did an MRI at the Dolphins facility
didn't find it or X ray didn'tfind anything. So I remember we were

playing Jackson the next week and I'mI was tung coach Dungee like I'm playing,
so we're good. I'm playing andhe's like, all right. So
we had a press conference and Iwas playing. I told the reporters,
I'm playing. I'm good. Didn'tfeel anything. And then they did an
MRI and they found out like thisis what car accidents look like. They
like, basically my T six vertibatethat's gone, like it blew up.
So I don't have a T sixvertibate. So like, now you're You're

probably done this year. So thatone was really difficult just to get myself
back to mentally to take those hitsand everyone of that level so fast and
so big, and I relied onmy strength and my speed, but I'm
like, I don't know if Ican ever throw my body into a play
like that. And once you startthinking at that level, oh yeah,
not the same, No you're not, because then your mental awareness gets involved

in ahead of everything that you cando physically. After what three years with
the Colts, what happens? Dothey release you? Do you? Because
then you have a year of twothousand and six where you hit like three
different teams. They released me becauseI just kept having injuries. At a
shoulder injury, I had a ankleinjury just kind of compounded. And you
know, obviously in our receiver roomas Reggie Wayne, Marvin Harris, and

Brandon Stokely, so I wasn't seeinga lot of playing time. I actually
got to a point where my secondyear, I was competing with Brandon was
stoke on playing and I remember tellingme it was like, dude, you're
about to get a shot. Andthen I got a shoulder injury in the
last preseason game and I never kindof got back. So I kind of
like the Colts started giving me thepackages like screen package. I had a
resverse package where they started utilizing mysecond year. But I just never could

stay healthy. So I know theybelieved in me, but at some points,
like he can't stay healthy, sothey can't keep giving you. They
released me him after my contract andthen I bounced around for a year and
I was just done. I justdidn't want to do the free agency go
to this team, go to thatteam, especially after being with the Colts
for three years. It was justa great environment. And that's what I
find interesting too, Brad is isorganization wise because you went to let's see

Rams, Dolphins, Steelers, Sohow different were each of those organizations.
I mean, I don't know howlong you spent with each one of them,
but it was all in the courseof two thousand and six. Yeah,
the Rams was interesting. I'm notgonna say too much about why I
think it's interesting, but you cansee what see why our teams win don't.
I was actually in the best shapeof my life again. I felt
like I got back again. Butthere's a lot of politics that I didn't

know. The play because the Coltsthere was no politics. If you're the
best player, you play. Youcan look at Gary Brackett, Robert Mathis.
All guys are either not drafted orlate draft picks and got opportunities.
That organization was a little more.They play favorites, play favorites. There
was a receiver that the head coachcoached at college and he was not better
than me. Not being arrogant,but he just was not faster, stronger,

bigger. And it's my fourth year. I've kind of been around it,
so you see that. And Ihad a really good camp. I
scored two touchdowns into the game oneof the preseason games, like I did
everything right, and they remember myagent calling me. We're playing Miami He's
like, you have to return akick this game to stay on the team.
I'm like, I had to returna kick to stay on the team.

Really, So I knew there.I was like, all right,
I'm not making this team. Andthen I went to Miami for a couple
weeks, same thing. They broughta guy in Wes Welker was there and
he was returning and he was theirnumber one receiver. I remember having a
conversation with the special team's coach andhe played against me and he was Atlanta.
I was like, I've played againstyou, and I'm four years in
and you learned at that level youcan talk to these coaches as men.
I said, West probably shouldn't bereturning kicks. It's kind of what you

brought me into and I've done itat a high level. You've played against
me. You know what I cando. And it's like, oh,
we're gonna go with West. I'mlike, he's your number one receiver.
Why are we risking him? Andso I kind of started seeing that as
like, I'm at my highest level. I'm not getting the same opportunities I
got with Colts, and I juststarted playing the game. Yeah, I
just got sick of it because youworked so hard in the off season,
like you put everything into this andit wasn't because I wasn't good enough.

I get that. But when youknow, I've been around long enough to
know, like and I was withthe Colts, who was one of the
winningest teams when I was there,So it's like I've seen kind of how
they promote the players who are betteror give kids opportunities that you know are
working hard. Right, And thenwhat about Pittsburgh? How long were you
there? I was there for anight. Oh jeez, So Pitts were
Actually I kind of regret that onebecause I think the Rooney family. I

think that would have been a greatculture. Coach Logan actually helped me with
that one. It was Mike Tomlin. There was a tower exactly, so
Caer really liked that organization. ButI got there that night and I row
mirrors in my room. I waslike, oh, And every time I've
ever stopped doing something, quitting,I've ever quit a sport, I get

this feeling in my heart. I'mlike, oh, this ain't good.
And I woke up in the morning, I was like, I'm out,
and I left until my agent turnedmy phone off for a day and I
just called my wife. I saidI'm done. I don't want to do
it, and then woke up thenext day all these X from my agent.
He's like, I can't believe youdid that. I'm like, well,
I'm done. Like I just Idon't want to do this anymore.
I don't have the will to pushthrough anymore. And I kind of regret

it because I think that would havebeen a good for me. The way
I played. I was a goodblocker, I could play special teams.
They're kind of blue collar the wayI played, so they would have promoted
it. But I was just atthe end of my journey. I want
to do something in business, somethingI could at least control my effort.
If I knew, if I puta thousand hours into this scene, it's
on me if it doesn't work.So that was kind of the end it

for me. And I played forthe Crush for a little bit, but
I just never got the love back. That's interesting because I mean, you
were two more years with the Crush, right, oh seven or no.
Eight? Yeah, I retire inO eight. Yeah, I tried it.
It was just like it was fun. I mean, it was it's
a fun game that the arena ballwas fun. Just two months of ball,
so I didn't have to work outas hard. I just could show
up and play. So that waskind of where I was. It's like,
I knew when you play at thatlevel, you know the commitment,

and I knew I couldn't commit toplay in the NFL, but I still
had enough in me to play alittle bit of ball. Playing in the
arena league is not as grinding asthe NFL, right, And the nice
thing about that though, is thatthen you were exposed to John Elway because
John Elway was part owner of theCrush with mister Boland. And did you
get to know him well while youwere there. Yeah, he was still
pretty involved. You know, hecome to practices and you know, it

was a great experience to see himand talk to him, and again just
another we grew up knowing him.You know, he's our favorite quarterback ever,
yep, yep. So yeah,it was a great experience just being
around him, and you know,seeing how he worked at the CEO level,
and I learned a lot from himfrom the business standpoint. Had a
lot of conversations with him about businessand you know, that's kind of where
I was in my journey. Iwas like, I need one more step

before I can get to the youknow, the business world, which segues
perfectly into where we're going because thenyou do work into after retiring to muscle
Farm and becoming the CEO of thatcompany which went from a million dollars in
the early years to one hundred andseventy million dollar company much later. So
talk about that and your reinvention intothe business world and how you did that.

Did you finish your degree? No, never graduated, so no kidding,
Well, there you go, inspiration. I'm actually a sophomore if you
look at my credits because I transferred. I actually would try to before we
get that. I try to goback to school a couple of years ago
just to get my degree. Mywife and I are going through it,
and it's like, you're a sophomore. So I had lost like seventy credits

when I transferred, so I'm like, yeah, I don't think I'm gonna
go back. So if you hadlike a semester, layer I thought I
had like a semester. I'm like, yeah, I got sixty more credits.
Yet we're not gonna finish it up. But muscle Farm was when I
was at that point in my career. I was like, I didn't have
a lot of experience and anything butsports nutrition or sports So I felt like

that was an easy pivot to somethingI was passionate about I had, I
know how about, And actually,during the NFL I was starting to dab
a little bit into the sports nutritionworld. I had a couple of doctors
that were helping me with supplements interms of my own body and whatnot.
So I started to developing products withthem with the idea that someday I wanted
to be like the next Eas andBill Phillips being here, I got to

see everything he did. Um,so I started taking Towards my end of
my career, I started bringing vendorsto games and usually really utilizing my relationships
at that level so I could introducehim to certain you know, peyton in
them and get them on the field. So I knew I had once I
was done, I had a pathwayto at least a meeting of Walmart being
the big retailers, and so thatwas kind of like what I was setting

up to start muscle Farm. Butso you started working your nutrition company while
you were still playing. Yeah.I remember Dallas Clark was my roommate and
camp and he's like, what isall this stuff. I'm like, it's
I'm working on something, but likeit's it's a something company, and um
so I was still when supplements wherepeople were a little iffy about him.
They were like, I'm not takingthat. I like, it's prude,

it's it's NSF certified. But becausewe've just gone through all the Mark McGuire,
sammy lot of guys were not likewilling to take it at the time,
but my vision on building the companywas they needed because I was taking
a lot of supplements and it washinting my performance. But I'd read the
articles, I'd read the magazines.I'd see the bodybuilders and think that's what

you look like, and then throughthe process with some of my doctors like
you're on the wrong stuff. It'shurting you. So I knew there was
a better way to do it.So that was kind of my original reasoning
going into this. It's like,there's athletes that want this and need this,
but they don't have an actual brandfor sports athletes that's built by an
athlete. So the trust is there. I have a my fiduciary responsibilities to

my athletes and my peers, right, so I always never cut corners.
So I knew if I could buildthat messaging and have the trust with athletes
and know, hey, everything Ido is for you, and it's based
off certifications. It's safety. You'llnever fill a drug test, but it's
going to help you perform at ahigher level. So that was our kind
of big idea behind it. Andthen you know, we just started going

after it. And you know,we literally started in my garage with my
son at the time who was justborn, my wife and I packing boxes
out of windows, and you know, there's about two years or just grunt
what am I doing? Everything?What am I doing? You know?
And then it accelerated. It gotto about sixteen million after three years,
and then it went from sixteen toeighty eighty to one sixty and it was

it just was like overnight, wow. And then the company grew and you
and I were conversing before we started, and that's where it became not as
much fun for you, because itis fun. Well, it's a lot
of work, and it's grunt workwhen you're starting a business and you're doing
it out of your garage, andthat's kind of fun even though it's a
ton of work. But then whenit gets so big, then it can
be not as much fun anymore.Yeah, we built I always called as

the fantasy Factory for athletes. Soour facility was basically a big warehouse that
was about forty thousand square feet andwe basically built a gym. We had
a putting green in there, andwe had simulator, we had everything.
And at the time we had aboutthirty forty employees, and I didn't have
hours, and I didn't have dresscode. Like if you came in,
half everyone's working out there and cutoffsand I'd bring vendors in, like this

is what you guys wear. I'mlike, yeah, it's our culture.
Like they work when they want,they will lift when they want to say
nutrition in sports athlete. Yeah,but you always had people there early and
late, and I learned that that, like the culture of just let them
be adults and be driven by aculture was why we were successful early on.
And once we hit about you know, one hundred and fifty sixty million,
we had to start bringing in morepeople, and I lost touch of

the control of the culture and they'resmart people we brought in, but they
weren't our original forty. And myassistant was kind of the gatekeeper. I
never interviewed anyone unless she interviewed themfirst, like she knew the culture,
and she did pretty good. Buteventually we had thirty forty people a week
we're hiring, and we got upto about three hundred fifty people real quick.
So it just got to a pointwhere it's just more bickering internally and

just couldn't get anything to sign off. And I'm a very like, let's
get decisions done quickly, move fast. We're killing time, and it just
got so corporate to where that's notmy style. Like I'm an entrepreneur.
I want things moving fast. Ineed decisions quickly and you got to execute.
So it just kind of suffocated ourculture. And I was just like,
you know what, this is timefor me to kind of take a

next step of my journey. Andbefore you did that in twenty fourteen,
that's when you start as the headcoach of our bout a West, So
you're kind of doing both at thesame time. So are you seeing like
that tunnel and that path a littlebit more too while you're kind of in
this monstrosity of what your company hasbecome. Yeah, I knew, Like
after I was about the same timeI was coming to that decision, I

was like, I always need somethingto do, Like I'm athletes can't just
sit on their hands competitively. Weneed to try and find that high somewhere.
So I knew this was like thenext competitive thing, and financially I
was fine, So I could takea year or two off and just focus
on this until I figured out mynext things. The coaching. It was
a nice pivot for me where Icould just go right into coaching and you
know, it got all the energy. I got a ton of competitiveness out

of it, you know. Soit was easy. People like do you
miss MUSTI from? Like, no, I get parents that are mad now,
but not not that meny, LikeI have angry employees every day,
Like I can manage parents. Absolutely. So it was just an it was
refreshing for me, Like it wasjust good and kids, Like when you're
around kids, it's just it's sofun. It is. It's a lot

of fun. Yeah. All right, so you are still the head coach
at our Battle West, but sinceyou left muscle farm. You've done a
few other different things. You kindof reinvent every couple of years with your
business. Yeah, Like we weretalking earlier, not many people know what
I do. My parents, myfather and mother in law don't. I
just kind of my hands are ineverything. But I've started two or three
other businesses. My wife and Istarted a business called True Bar. It

was a vegan women's brand that wasplant based. We were kind of peeking
around the corner before twenty and eighteenthat you know, women need to be
in leadership, and it kind ofworked out perfecause we launched in eighteen,
so everything in our company was womenled. I helped, but I was
kind of like outside of it.We hired only women attorneys, women creative
firms, and we ran that forabout two years, got in costco.

I think it got up to aboutfifty million in revenues, and then I
was telling you, I have abouta two year window of where I need
to move on. And they startgetting bigger, adding more people, and
I've seen that show before, soI'm like, they've done that yet.
So I was able to sell itto a partner of mine. He took
it over and then I just movedon to another couple of companies, and
I'm more or less I'm in Myhands are in everything sports attrition, So

there's brands you see out there.I'm some way involved, but almost a
consultant now yeah, I just reallyconsultant. I like to be behind the
scenes. Yeah, people don't knowwhat I'm doing. When I was at
Muscle Farm, it was great tohave that, but I'm not a self
promoter. You were the face ofthat, yeah, and I don't like
that. So I don't like doinginterviews. I don't like to have to
do all that stuff. Like Ilike to be behind the scenes. So

this feels really natural for me becauseI'm still getting my competitive juices. I'm
in the industry doing stuff I love, but I'm behind the scenes of it.
Right, You're the anti Bill Phillipswith your shirt off for eas yep,
yep. The coaching part of thingsyou've been doing that it'll be ten
years that you're going into at ourVetta West. What's that been like and

what are some of the challenges thatyou deal with and how you kind of
deal with kids, deal with parents. And it's rare that you see head
coaches stay around at a single schoolfor that long, and I know what,
you're alma mater, and you havea lot of heartstrings there too,
which I'm sure helps. Yeah.Again, I had a vision and it
was ten years when I did mypresentation to the principle and the board who
was hiring committee. I had aten year plan. I said, it's

going to take ten years, andyou know, we have to change culture.
Everyone's going to other schools. OurVada US was the destination. It's
no longer relevant. So we knewwe had had a long process in this.
So we had some bad seasons,some zero loss seasons, and we
had some winning seasons. But nowthe community's finally coming back. We had
like sixty five freshmen last year,which is usual double than what we have,

so we're getting numbers back. Ilove it. And even the seasons
we lost, I still had kidscompeting. At the end of the day.
What I learned from coaching, winning'shard at any level. I thought
I was just going to come inand win. I learned that really quickly.
There's good football coaches in Colorado,there's good talent. It's hard to
win. So it's been enjoyable.I think We're at a point now where
we're about to turn to where Ithink we're going to be competing for semi

final positions and then get there andyou have a chance possibly getting a state
championship. But I believe with thegroup we have right now from freshman up,
we can compete for state championships.Going forward took ten years, but
we've done a lot of camps.I mean, I've run a summer track
program has about two hundred fifty kidsin it. So I've been doing that
and exposing that purple and white topeople again in A West, which is

reason I went there because I watchedthe mcdougulls. It was cool to go
there. So we have a challengebecause we have three schools within two to
five miles. Getting kids to comeback to A West was a challenge,
but I think A West right nowis the biggest school in jeff Goo now,
particularly because we've got a lot ofkids coming back to play football which
now play other sports. And thatwas the thing too, is like kids

were not playing multi sports. I'mlike, we need multi sport athletes,
stop playing just one sport. SoI'm seeing that with my football players and
most of the coaches get that ifthe football program's good to use, your
other programs are. So it's beena great culture at a West. Coaches
are great, our administration's great,very supportive, and our journey and it's
starting to kind of come back towhere we were late nineties. Have you

brought people back from like those teams? Have you tried to get like guys
that you played with involved? Arethere teachers at the school that are still
there, Like what's part of thatcommunity that's maybe still there from when you
were there yea years ago? Andthen speaking to coach Logan, I started
this journey about coaching. You gottaget a loyal staff and it's going to
take you years to find that.And I've got some of the best men
in the room that are just greatpeople. Right, Finding a good coach

is not hard. Finding a goodperson that's a good coach is hard,
Yes, And I can coach someonethat's a good person to be a great
coach. So that's kind of beenmodeling that for the last couple of years.
But we have pretty much everyone ofmy staff either went to a West
or played for me. So I'vegot some young kids that are loving our
JV coaches. I promoted two youngkids last year to head coach JV.
They played for me in eighteen andseventeen. They've been with me for about

three years, so I'm getting somekids coming back, which to me is
the ultimate is the ultimate compliment.Yeah, it's like that is awesome.
And I've got like kids that grewup watching me play. Then I've got
a few players that played with me. So it's pretty much all he West
guys. That is super cool.But it works because we know what the
brand's about and we have expectations andwe're all going towards that. And most

people may not know this, butthe coaches that Dave Logan has at Creek
now have been coaches that he hadfrom a West to Chatfield to Mullan to
create. I mean like they've stayedwith him all that time. And to
have some of those same guys bewith you that entire time, I mean
that says a lot and that's hardto find. Yeah, And actually we
have Craig Blazer. His dad's bigand are about a community and he coached

for coach Logan for a while hewas there Dean, and he was looking
to come back and I was fortunateCoach Logan called me and say, hey,
I got a great candidate that youknow he went to Pomona. So
I'm like, well, he wentto Pomona, but he's been a great
So I'm getting some great additions likethat, that was you coach for Coach
Logan, so I know what you'regoing to come be as a coach.
And he's our special team's coordinator anddid an amazing job. So we're getting

a few guys like that. Igot Chase braun just Coach braun Son who
coached me obviously coaches with Coach Logannow again, so we will get him
to come. So we're getting somereally good coaches from old to young.
No what AS is about, andthat's really what it is, is not
many kids understand what this program wasfrom the Royal Holidays. There's some talent
coming through as back in the ninetiesand even through mid two thousands, but

I feel like we're finally getting kidsand that's what I'm excited about because I
want to help these kids get tothat next level and it's fun to win,
so I want to get to wherewe're consistently winning. But I think
we're really close. And I thinkwhat you're doing, Brad, A lot
of programs have gone through that becausethe coaching carousel can be so tough for
a lot of these schools because coachescome in, they're there to coach their
son for a year, and thenthey're gone or they're there and then they

realize, oh, this is alot of work, I don't get paid,
they're gone, And so to bethere for that long and then to
come in with a plan and sayI want to change this culture and then
have a plan of like running thecamps, getting the word out there,
and getting it out in the community. And Arvada is a huge city that's
turned over a lot throughout the years, and you do have other schools that
you've got to try and compete withas far as Pomona and RV and those

schools. So I think to createthat culture again, is that's pretty impressive?
Well, thanks, it really is. All right. Your family and
you have kids now that are inmiddle school. Your son is a hell
of a football player right now andkind of really getting into it. Talk
a little bit about that dynamic,and you're going to be coaching him,
well kind of already coaching him rightnow, your shoes on a whole other

foot as dad and coach. Yeah, it's a it's been fun to watch.
And we spoke earlier about this,like with my kids, and I
see parents that haven't played at thenext level and it just sometimes I just
roll my eyes. I'm like,quit putting so much pressure on your kids.
So it's nice to have my sonand my daughter. My daughter will
be there in two years. Myson was a freshman this year, but
my biggest thing for him was Idon't want him to follow my journey.

I don't want him to even knowwhat I did. So he's kind of
crafted his own little journey. Asa defensive guy. He like doesn't even
want anything to do with the football. He wants to knock it down,
not even catch it, like,which is great because when we were going
through little league, he was literallya minimum play kid. He probably played
ten plays a game until about aseventh grade year, and everyone's parents would
like, do you not play footballwith him? He's like, no,
he doesn't want to when he wantsto, like, I'm not going to

push him. I don't care ifhe plays football, like, and it
was so funny because people would belike, I cannot believe that. I'm
like, you don't realize I playedit. People that have played at a
high level kind of get what thepressure is and you don't want your kid
to go through that. So he'skind of got his own journey. He
played last year as a freshman onbar seat a little bit. He plays
linebacker. When you played defense,what position did you play? dB?

Okay, if you would asked mea year and a half ago of like
he could be stronger than me,faster than me, I think there's no
way. Now he's fourteen and he'ssix ninety, bigger than I was in
high school. Just squaded five fifteenthe other day, so into it.
He's got two D one offers already. But the great thing about him is
he has an uncommon focus and hedoesn't care. Like he got two offers
in the last month and didn't tellany of his friends, And I love

that about him. He's just like, didn't put it on Twitter. Yeah,
yeah, it doesn't care. Soit's been nice. And my daughter's
got a great opportunity. She playslacrosse and soccer. Hardest working little girl,
like she's four point zero. I'mso proud of her, she'll get
like one hundred and two out onehundred. I'm like, can you just
get like a ninety out one hundred? Like, so could you underachieve just
at Yeah, I've got great kids. That's great. I'm very proud of

them, proud dad obviously, andit's it's for me as a coach.
You know, I love coaching otherkids, but finally I get to have
my son around me. And Idon't coach him and we don't talk at
practice, but at least know he'sthere because he's on the defense side.
But it's finally something I'm merely excitedabout. And people have asked, like,
are you done when your son's done. I'm like, I probably am
not. My daughter's gonna be theretwo years later. Yeah, my daughter

Dre told me you're not leaving untilI'm out, So like, I'm here
for a long time and that's cool. They want you there. A lot
of kids don't want their parents aroundthe school. Yeah, so that's saying
something too, you know. Andmy wife's great. She's very supportive.
And I think anyone that coaches football. If you're significant other does not like
football, then you're gonna have ahard time so she understands one, that's
football season, You're not going tosee me. So she's been a great

supporter from the time I was inthe NFL till now. She's been around
it a long time. So sheloves football, which you have to have.
That's good. Okay, last questionthen that I ask all my guests
is as you look back on yourcareer and you have these ups and downs,
whether it's injuries or going to threedifferent teams in one year and then
figuring out where you are mentally andphysically, how do you get past those?

How do you continue to reinvent yourselfeven in your retirement life and continue
to succeed. I mean, you'vehad so many successes, but with successes
come quote unquote failures, but youmove past those. So what advice would
you give people on how to dothat? I think it's perspective. I
wake up every morning happy, youknow, It's like I just get to
the next day. So that's alwaysmy mindset is like the sun comes up

the next day. So every morningmy wife doesn't get it, is said,
why are you so happy? EveryI just have hope every day I
had a new journey. I don'tknow what it is, and you have
to understand nothing good happens fast.You have to stay at it, and
you've got to be willing to makespace for moments of uncomfort. And you're
gonna have a lot of uncomfortable moments, a lot of days where you're like,
I can't do this, but youjust have to get to that next

day. And that's kind of mymindset, is like there's those days that
just aren't fun and I just staydisciplined and I just stay my head down
and stay the course. But Iknow there's better days ahead, and that's
to me. Just just get tothe next day. You have perspective,
though, like understand like you gotto have goals, you got to have
a plan, but you have tohave perspective. You're not going to make
a million dollars the first year becauseit's very hard to be successful in sports

and business, and even when youget your wins, be expecting some losses
and just make space for it.Like that's part of life. And I
always look at it. My perspectiveis anytime I lose, it's growth,
and so it's always perspective. Soyou could literally stress yourself out and say
I'm a loser. I'm having abad day. I've failed at this.
Yeah, you could go down thatjourney and put yourself in a dark hole,

or you could have a good mindsetand say, you know what,
it's one of those days. IMgonna wake up tomorrow. I'm gonna get
back at it. So for me, it's just get to the next day,
have a great perspective, and goafter it. I love it.
Well for a guy that doesn't liketo do interviews, you talked a lot.
I like sports, so I cando interviews or sports, and obviously
you, I'm comfortable with you.I love doing it. It's just I
don't like when I was doing business. Is some of the other stuff I

didn't like doing right, Yeah,did you get tired of media stuff?
In the pros and even at college? I was not good at it.
And honestly, being a coach hasgot me out of my comfort zone.
When I took over as a coach, I'm like, I have to do
a banquet, I have to speak, So almost didn't coach because of that.
So being a coach thats got meto where I'm comfortable speaking. Well,
this was fun, Brad. Itwas really good to see you and
I appreciate your time and good luckthis year and all the rest of the

years, and I can't wait tosee where you go and where your kids
go too. Well. Thank youso much. I really appreciate it.
Nothing good happens fast, very well, said Brad, No matter the industry
or the goal, patience is sovery important. We hear that theme over
and over in these conversations. Well, if you're hearing this, that means
you've listened to the entire episode.Thank you. I hope you enjoyed Brad's
conversation and listen to others. Ifyou'll like what you hear on the podcast,

please leave a rating and a reviewon Apple Podcasts and Spotify. New
episodes of Cut, Traded, Fired, Retired come out every Tuesday on nearly
every podcast platform. Get social onTwitter and Instagram at CTFR podcast, and
check out the website CTFR podcast dotcom. I'm your host, Susiewargin.
Again, thank you for listening,and until next time, please be careful,

be safe, and be kind.Take care
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