Tuesday, February 20th, 2018

University of New Mexico PEP 493 Intro to Sport Management Spring 2018


First, register for the website. Then, upload your video clip choice for peak performer. Write a brief description of why you chose the person and why the clip is relevant. The description should be at least one paragraph (minimum 6 sentences). Make sure to include your full name.

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  • Skyler Mendoza

    **The above video shows live footage of girls fighting and might be triggering to some!**
    Although Mixed Martial Arts isn’t as popular as conventional sports like football, baseball, or basketball, its role in society has become increasingly prominent. For my peak performer, I chose Rener Gracie, the head instructor at the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy in Torrance, California. He is the grandson of Hélio Gracie, who created the subset of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, as it was originally a Japanese martial art.
    While he is a very accomplished fighter and earned his black belt at the very young age of 18, I believe he is an inspiration for other reasons entirely. Rener and his brother created the “Bullyproof” program in order to teach kids how to defend themselves and gain self-confidence while continuing to respect others. He believes in empowerment through the teaching of martial arts and self defense, and often works on a pro-bono basis with cases that are more extreme– like Naomi Johnson, featured in the video above. He even invited this girl and her family to stay in his home while he trained her and her sister for free.
    I think that he is an amazing role model and admire how he has used his sport to connect with the kids of our nation. I wish that other prominent figures and athletes would do more of the same.

  • Kaylah Slade


    Amy Wambach was a huge inspiration to me for women’s soccer. She really encompasses everything that is a leader. She puts her team before herself, and is attentive and caring towards her players. I think these things are really important when anyone is playing a team sport.
    When playing in a team, it is about being the best that you can be, but also making sure that everyone else in the team is being the best person that they can be. It’s pushing each other up, and playing for each other because it is the sport that you love. Being captain of the national team, she accomplished this.
    Not only was Wambach a great soccer player, she was an avid spokes person for women’s rights in soccer, and mental health. By using her name in soccer, she was able to open up about her own personal problems and try to help others who have dealt with mental health issues. This really big in my eyes, because it lets people know that it is ok to reach out for help. Amy Wambach really did make a difference in soccer, as well as many other things that she believed in.

  • Merissa Cooper


    Michael Jordan has always been one of my heroes growing up, and his famous “flu game” is an excellent example of peak performance. Michael was one of the most passionate, competitive players out there, bring 100% effort 100% of time he was on the court. He led the Chicago Bulls every game, including this one where he was extremely sick. He knew how important he was to the team and also how important this game was, so he rallied and played his hardest even though I’m sure he would have rather been in bed. He went on to scoring 38 points that game and led the Bulls to victory. I remember when I played sports in high school nothing was worse than being sick, but I always tried to remember Michael Jordan’s performance in this game against the Utah Jazz. This game inspired me to try my hardest regardless of the circumstances. Michael Jordan is an incredible leader and his “flu game” is definitely a great example of a peak performance.

  • Evan Martinez

    De’Aaron Fox may be a rookie currently in the NBA but he continues to inspire me. Every new interview with De’Aaron shows how focused and hungry he is in the league right now. It is inspiring to see the huge flame and passion De’Aaron possesses with regards to basketball. He carries himself with integrity and learns from losses which are both great skills a leader needs. I think the reason I look up to De’Aaron so much is because I too am very passionate about basketball even though I am clearly not on the skill level he is. He is always positive and pushes his teammates to step it up and keep fighting no matter what. In my eyes, De’Aaron Fox should win the NBA rookie of the year award just based off of his character and leadership expertise. The time he puts into practicing his shot and ball handling skills are very proportionate to how well of a player he is. All around De’Aaron continues to further himself and how much better he can be. It is young players who I grew up watching, (De’Aaron included) that continue to inspire me daily to push myself and others.

  • Alex Hernandez


    The athlete that is my favorite example of a leader is Kobe Bryant. I chose Kobe Bryant because I feel like his incredible work ethic and desire to be the best had him to constantly push his teammates to be the best that they possibly could. This is what helped him become a 5 time NBA Champion. A leader to me is someone who works really hard at their craft to serve as an example for others. Many past and current NBA legends share stories of Kobe’s crazy determination to be the best and how he would always be pushing his teammates in practice. Many times when I am needing some motivation, I find myself listening to Kobe’s interviews or watching his highlights and get inspired to finish the task at hand. Kobe’s influence was felt way beyond basketball. ‘Mamba Mentality’ is now a term to describe the ability to not give up and constantly work on your craft. In this strong way of influence is how I see Kobe because he was never afraid of the limelight and always wanted to be the guy to shoot the ball in the clutch moments. This is what makes him great in my opinion.

    - Alex Hernandez

  • Jonathan Hernandez

    Ever since Conor McGregor came into the UFC scene, he became a huge inspiration to me. He is the prime example of someone who came from nothing, to immense success – and it started with a vision. One of my favorite quotes by the Notorious Conor McGregor is: “There’s no talent here, this is hard work. This is an obsession. Talent does not exist, we are all equals as human beings. You could be anyone if you put in the time. You will reach the top, and that’s that. I am not talented, I am obsessed.” This is something that I live by everyday. If you have a vision, are obsessed over that vision, then you will succeed. It is as simple as that. Truly anything is attainable if you put in the time. This clip essentially shows who Conor McGregor is and what he is about, and I hope it inspires some of you as well.

  • Israel Chavarria


    Brad Stevens is currently the head coach for the Boston Celtics, and was previously the head coach at Butler University in Indianapolis. Above all, I think Brad Stevens is a great example of leader and currently one of the best coaches in the NBA along with coach Popovich from the Spurs. I believe he he will help the Celtics win a championship or two in the near future. The reason i believe he is a great leader is because when he was the head coach at Butler University, a mid-major University, he led them to a back to back national title games in 2010 and 2011 against Duke and UCONN, which are two powerhouses and recruit top players from the nation. Also, Brad was only 33 years old at the time. Extremely Impressive!

    Furthermore, the Boston Celtics signed him as the head coach making him the youngest coach in the league at age 36, but he quickly adjusted and finds ways to have good seasons with the Boston Celtics. Many NBA analyst and greats including coach Popovich say he is special person and a top coach in the NBA. Also many player respect him and want to play for him like Kyrie Irving. Overall, he just seems like a special person on and off the floor, he is a great communicator, he is passionate, he does a great job of building team cohesion, and lastly, he is extremely authentic making him a the great leader that he is.

    -Israel Chavarria

  • Amy Gonzalez

    The athlete that I admire the most and believe is a peak performer in all aspects of life is Lolo Jones. Not only does she have extraordinary athletic abilities that have brought her to three olympic games in two different sports, but she is an admirable person in the way she lives her life. In a world where standing for the unpopular opinion is almost impossible, she is a true phenomenon. Lolo has made it a point to publicize her belief in waiting to have sex before marriage, and she is an inspiration to all people who wish to have the guts to actually stand for something. She has also gone through numerous injuries and failures that should have put her out of hurdling and bobsledding, but she still was determined to be successful. As a former track athlete myself, she has always been someone I looked up to as an all around great person and motivator that is proof that you can be famous and still hold on to the things that make you who you are. I know that Lolo Jones is the type of person who will be successful no matter what she does because there is so much more to her than just her sports. At the end of the day it’s not the medals, ribbons, or even money that make someone a great person and effective leader, it’s the impact that they leave on the people around them.


  • Domenic Flores

    One of my favorite athletes to watch has always been Zlatan Ibrahimovic because he is the most fearless player on the soccer field which allows him to score some crazy goals. Zlatan approaches each game like nobody else because with his “lion” mentality he believes nobody is skilled enough to stop him from winning games. This type of confidence in yourself is the trait I admire the most because he carries it with him on and off the field making everyone around him more honest and respectful of him. Off of the field he is a very polarizing character because he is arrogant enough to refer to himself in the third person but doesn’t miss an opportunity to surprise fans with a nice gesture to thank them for their support. Recently Zlatan tore a ligament in his knee which sidelined him for just 6 months. He says that now he is reaching the end of his career he doesn’t want to retire because of an injury so he training harder than ever which again shows how his mentality makes him unstoppable. Zlatan will go down as one of the greatest strikers in his generation having won over 30 trophies in 5 different countries.


  • Alex Hart


    An unbelievable athlete and great leader example is Kevin Garnett. Garnett was a physical, relentless, crazy, and one of the most determined NBA basketball players of all time. His size and skill set allowed him to be a very talented player, winning an NBA MVP in 2004 and an NBA Championship in 2008. But what makes him a great leader is his positive attitude, focus, ability to teach, and determination. He is comparable to Tim Duncan, who is a very fundamental player and great leader, but has a personality of a much more intense and he was loud player. He had the ability to push himself for 20 years in the NBA being on some of the worst teams and then some of the best teams, but it made him into the leader and player he is today. He did not care about what others thought and he pushed himself and his teammates to become successful. He revolutionized basketball in a lot of different ways because of his intense personality, ability to teach, and unique skills on and off the court. He was a great leader to others and led by example.

  • Justin Jiron


    I choose Tony Romo former quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys to be my example of leadership. Being a Dallas fan I have seen the best of wins and the worst of losses. I believe Romo has great leadership in the way he carries himself, the way he connects with teammates, and his pure passion for the game of football. This video has him giving a speech where he conceded his position due to injury, and to keep distractions away from the team’s success. Romo did not want to give up his job, but he knew it was best for the team. He has literally given up his body to help his team succeed, with
    little credit given to him, and carries majority of the blame for his team’s
    struggles. I believe Romo was a very good quarterback who demonstrated his
    leadership on and off the field.

  • Dominic Barnes

    I choose Manny Pacquaio, because he is proof that you can come from nothing and become one of the greatest boxers of all time. Even though he had nothing he has accomplished many things in the world of boxing. He is the first boxer to win the lineal championship in five different weight classes. He is also the first boxer in history to win major world titles in four of the original eight weight classes of boxing: flyweight, featherweight, lightweight, and welterweight. Manny Pacquaio is important to my family because we are Filipino, and like him my mother was very poor in the Philippines. I believe that he can be an inspiration to anybody who thinks that they can’t make it because they are poor.


  • Antonio Hicks

    I decided to do my piece on one of my favorite leaders of all time, Tim Tebow. Though he may not have amounted to much in the NFL to some people, no one can take away the will of Tim Tebow. In High School he lead Nease High School to win a 4A state championship, in college he was almost unstoppable. He won two national championships with the University of Florida his freshman and sophomore year. Then went on to win the Heisman in 2007. After a crushing loss to Ole Miss, Tebow delivers a speech that will could motivate a dead person to live again. He did have his moments in the NFL, because Tebow always found a way to win no matter what, he bleeds success and hard work. With a will that could give him good odds when hes outnumbered 100 to 1. He leads by example and by hard work, being probably one of the hardest workers in the world. Showing class and integrity off and on the field, all while continuing to strive to be great. https://youtu.be/nbHYPi6fMlQ

  • Beau Hott

    Cael Sanderson is currently the head wrestling coach at Penn State and is one of the greatest wrestlers to ever live. Coach Sanderson wrestled at Iowa State university where he went 159-0 over the course of four years, proving that he was the best by winning four national titles. In 2004 Sanderson went on to win a gold medal in the Olympic games in Athens. In 2009 Sanderson took leading as far as he could go by becoming the head wrestling coach at Penn State. He has led the Nittany Lions to win national titles in 2011,2012,2013,2014, and in 2016. Sanderson pushes everyone around him to be the best and the people have have him in their life all adore him. His wrestlers still think that he’s the best because he works out with them every day, so they all said he should try out for the world team again. He said that he would try out if they won a national championship. Needless to say Coach Sanderson had a tryout to attend. It’s probably better for him to keep winning national championships as a coach. The key to success is to keep going and to outwork everybody.