Jules is back, but this may have been his toughest assignment to date as he interviewed the lively, cute and goal-scoring U-17 Women’s National Team forward Amy Rodriguez from Lake Forest, Calif. Jules admitted he didn’t know much about any of the women’s national team programs, but quickly found out as Amy explained how she got picked for the U-17s, what the team does during their camps, and how its different than high school soccer. He also found out some of her likes and dislikes, if she had a boyfriend and if she was intimidated by his good looks. Yes, Jules actually asked her that, so read on to find out her answer.
Jules: “What do you think of IMG Academy”
Amy: “I think it’s good that we get to come here every year and use the facilities. I think it’s a great place for athletes to train and were lucky to get to play here.”
J: “Would you like to live here”
A: “I’m not really sure. You’re away from your parents, so I don’t know. And I’ve heard you guys have to share one bathroom.”
J: “That’s not true. Each dorm room has two bathrooms.”
J: “I don’t know much about the women’s teams, so tell me a little bit about the U-17s. Who is your coach?”
A: “David Smith is normally our coach, but for this camp it is Patrick Baker, who is usually our assistant.”
J: “You aren’t in Residency, so what is your team training for down the road.”
A: “I think our age group is more of a transition for our age group because it’s after we first get into the national team program with the U-15s or U-16s and get an idea of what it is like, but before we are with the U-19s when we are battling for a world championship. The U-17s basically prepare us to get up to the U-19s.”
J: “Do you mainly just have camps?”
A: “Usually it is mostly camps, but we play international competition in the states. We’ve played Germany and Canada before and last year with the U-16s we played Scotland in November.”
J: “Did they wear kilts on the field?”
A: "No, they didn’t wear kilts."
J: “Did you get into the national team program similar to the way a lot of the guys do through the Olympic Development Program?”
A: "Yep. I went through regional camps, so it’s basically the same way as you guys."
J: “What do you guys do for fun during the camps?”
A: “We color each other’s hair. We actually dyed one girl’s hair orange.”
J: "Did she lose a bet or something?"
A: "Noooo. It was supposed to be a light blonde, and it turned to orange and kind of patchy. It was basically a malfunction – a hair malfunction. Most of the time though we just watch TV and eat Kit Kats. I also have homework to do, but I usually don’t do it until the last day. I’m a definite procrastinator when it comes to homework.”
J: “You play high school soccer, how is that different than playing with the national team?”
A: “The competition in high school isn’t as high as when playing with the national team of course, but I really do enjoy it. It’s kind of a break, and you get to work on a lot more technical stuff. The level play is higher and it’s good experience.”
J: “Where are you thinking of going to for college?”
A: “A lot of times I think I could go to the East Coast and go far away, but it just seems like the West Coast seems like a better fit for me. As to what college I’ll exactly go to, I’m still undecided.”
J: (After finding out Amy was from Lake Forest, Calif., which is part of Orange County) “Do you like O.C., the television show?”
A: “I hate the O.C. I’m really not interested in it, and I think it is a stereotypical kind of show. I don’t care for it that much as other people.”
J: I’m hoping they’ll start a similar show from Lancaster, Pa., my hometown. They could have a bunch of Amish people running around.
J: “Are you more partial towards women’s sports as opposed to men’s sports?”
A: “I feel like I can relate to women’s sports more. I do like watching men’s soccer, including the English Premier League and stuff like that, but I actually went to see some of the games during the Women’s World Cup because that’s more me.”
J: “Do you have a boyfriend? I’m not hitting on you, I’m serious.”
J: “Who are some of the cutest guys on the U-17 team?”
A: No comment
J: C’mon. That’s a cop out.
A: (laughing) I have no comment.
J: “Are you intimidated by my good looks?”
A: "No." (Editor’s note: That was an emphatic “No.”)
J: “What is your favorite kind of music?”
A: “I like everything.”
J: “Everyone says that.”
A: “I don’t know, I like whatever is popular.” (Editor’s note: Her teammate nearby said Amy likes the “best of the best,”… which Jules figured to mean the most popular of the popular.)
J: “If you were stranded on a desert island with one person, who would it be? And you can’t cop out of this one.”
A: “Brad Pitt”
J: “What is your favorite food?”
A: “Kit Kat”
J: “Favorite Women’ National Team player?
A: “Shannon Boxx.”
J: “Favorite Men’s National Team player?
A: “Landon Donovan.”
J: “Do you think you could keep up with the U-17 guys?”
A: “I’d like to say yes, but I’m not sure I could.”
J: “I’m a defender, you’re a forward. Could you score on me?”
A: Maybe. I’ll take a shot at it.