"MY REACTION TO THAT GAME WAS NOT ONLY IS IT BACK, BUT IT’S HERE TO STAY."
What does it mean to be getting this Devotion Scarf?
“For me, it’s truly an honor to be recognized by my team. They’re in my hometown. I grew up here. To be recognized for this Devotion Scarf is incredible.”
How did it all start for you here with the club?
“I’ve been here from the beginning because I grew up here. I grew up in Sunnyvale, California. I played soccer at Sunnyvale High School, and then I went to San Jose State. During that time, the Earthquakes came along. One of the historical moments for me was when the Quakes played the Cosmos and the great Pele at Spartan Stadium. The impression that I got from that was that soccer had arrived in the United States. It turns out I got drafted from San Jose State to the Earthquakes. I was one of the first local players to be signed to the club and I played with them from 1979 to 1985.
“And then the club came back as the Clash in 1996 and I was at the first game against D.C. United. I’ll always remember Eric Wynalda taking the ball on the wing and scoring that goal. At that moment, I thought to myself that soccer was back again in the U.S.
“Since then, the team has played at Spartan Stadium, Buck Shaw, and now we have this beautiful home in Avaya Stadium. The inaugural game in March 2015 was so exciting. My reaction to that game was not only is it back, but it’s here to stay. I saw the ups and downs, so to know we’re here to stay is an amazing feeling.”
"THE WAY I SEE IT, THE CLUB IS PART OF MY FAMILY."
What has your transition been like from a player to a loyal fan?
“Once your playing career is over, you become a fan. You’re always behind them. Both of my sons played soccer and one of them played for the Quakes academy. You keep watching the team and supporting at the games. It’s not only a game: it’s somewhere you can go with your friends and family.”
As a former player and now a devotion scarf recipient, what would be your message to fans of this club?
“While we have some ups and downs, be loyal. There’s always that spirit that goes along with supporting your team. You’re a family. The way I see it, the club is part of my family. This team has had some great season and it’s a great feeling when we succeed. Win or lose, we can’t turn our back on them.”