I recently caught up with 2020 3 star dual-threat Quarterback Sofian Massoud of Cy Lakes to discuss his football background. Massoud, originally from Harlem, New York is committed to the University of Houston. A kid with a bright future and knowledge about the game he loves.
First, congrats on the season and the UH commitment. Now let’s talk about transitioning from NY to TX, what would you say is the biggest difference in the football culture here than Harlem?
I would say the biggest difference is the resources. There isn’t as much field space and there is more travel time required to get to a field or gym to train. Both training on the field and in the gym are basic necessities for football players, however it takes a lot more for kids in NY to get these basic things done. I think you really got to be dedicated in order to play football in NY because it’s not a huge part of the city’s culture looking at the whole scale of the entire city. There if u want to make it you really have to be an outlier cause really you’re going against the grain. It takes a lot of belief.
Go into detail about the people who has been there for you and how do they keep you on the right track?
First, my parents definitely have kept me on the right track, making sure I’m doing good in school and advancing as a person as well as my dad really helping me target schools throughout the recruiting process. Apart from that, you know since I was young I played for the Harlem Jets and and the president Coach Mel really does a great job of really fostering kids and making sure that they not only are doing good in football but doing good in the classroom. Also, of course the coaching staff at Cy Lakes and Coach Patton who really helped me throughout this whole process helping me make sure I had all things taken care of to graduate early. Then of course all those I’m close to and work out with especially back in NY my K.O.S.T.T guys really have a standard so missing workout really isn’t a thing.
What are your game day rituals?
Rituals, I wouldn’t say I have any in like a superstitious way, but I do like to wear my most comfortable shoes and then game time apparel. I like to wear a arm sleeve and some bands.
Talk about the most challenging thing you went through playing football and how did you overcome it.
The most challenging thing for me was patience. And I say that because as a kid I wasn’t the fastest or the strongest or the biggest but I was always working. The gap initially was very big between me and the other kids I played with talent wise, but I was always able to compete because I did things the right way, things like touch the line. It’s hard to be patient when the gap is big and not try to cheat things because when you look at them now the distance is so great and you can’t see the progress, but I believe if I continued to try to do things perfectly the gap would close and it did but I can only tell now looking in hindsight. So when I was going thru it the patience of believing in doing the right thing when things seemed stagnant was tough.
If you weren’t an athlete, what can you see yourself doing and why?
I mean I think I got the skills to do any job I want to, but what I would want to do, probably coach because I know the impact coaches have had on me and I know how I wanted to be coached and I think I could be a good teacher.
Explain your style of play and how can you see yourself fitting into the UH program.
I think there’s fluidity in the way I play. Many different aspects of my game as well as improvisational skills which are big at the position. I think my problem solving skills will help me be most successful at the college level because knowing where to go with the ball is the most important thing and if I can do that as a team we will be very successful.
In what ways have your coaches played an important role in your life?
I just mentioned the impact of coaches and I think that when you’re young and impressionable the way coaches speak to you and how they teach you sticks with you. A lot of times they say things that don’t really click at the moment but later you think back and you’re like that’s why he said that. I just think all the coaches I’ve been around have taught me things and tried to steer me in the right direction, and have helped me be who I am.
What intrigues you the most about the quarterback position?
The pressure of it or perceived pressures of it. You know I wanted to be a quarterback when I figured I rather lose the game than let anyone else lose a game for me. I figured I trust myself More than I trust anyone In that role. And I think it’s the toughest thing to try and pursue from a recruitment aspect to gameplay to leadership to the mental requirements of he position. It was a challenge.
What are your future goals beyond UH?
Beyond UH I want to be successful in the NFL and then start some businesses back in community and make sure all the kids are straight and help them have more opportunities and platforms to showcase their talents.
Who is your favorite player of all time and why?
That is a tough question, to give just one player but I have many that I think I’ve taken something from, Aaron Rodgers, Fran Tarkenton, Patrick Mahomes, Ed reed, Brett Favre. I love instinctual play and those guys have it and they’re innovative with the things they do and I love to study it.
In your own words, define success.
I think success is never quitting in pursuit of what you’re doing while giving your maximum effort. Not about how the story ends.