MIND GAMES: Philip Embraces Strong Mental Prep on Gridiron
AUSTIN SENIOR DEFENSIVE END VICTOR PHILIP LOVES MIND GAMES. ESPECIALLY, THE KIND THAT TEST HIS CREATIVE THINKING.
When the 6-foot-3, 315-pounder isn't tearing through offensive backfields, he plays chess. He appreciates the strategy
and mental grappling of it. It stimulates his thoughts.
It's like how he approaches football.
Philip, who has 30 total tackles and three tackles for loss through six games this season, spends hours and hours watching film on opposing quarterbacks, identifying strengths and weaknesses. He'll then adjust his own game during that week of practices in preparation for what's to come.
Philip also understands the battle of the trenches against offensive linemen is won with the hands.
"It's like a game of chicken, seeing who shoots their hands first in the trenches and how fast you can counter it," Philip said.
Read and react. Staying one move ahead. Counters. Like a chess match.
But more importantly, Philip plays with a drive.
Being average is the worst- case scenario in his eyes. It's practically a fear.
"I have to prove, not just to myself but everyone else, that I'm not just another football player who was blessed with talent but couldn't go nowhere with it," Philip said. "I'm inspired to show that this talent can take me far in this game and I'll work my hardest to maximize it."
Philip talked more with VYPE.
VYPE: When did you start playing football, and what was it about the game you fell in love with?
PHILIP: I started playing football around the seventh grade, but I didn't fall in love with the game until around last year, to be honest. The reason for that was that I grew up as a basketball fan/ player and football back then was just never a focus. But as time went on, the love for the game just grew more and more.
VYPE: What is it about your game that you feel makes you a special player?
PHILIP: Well, one reason is the way I'm built. I'm blessed with God-given football genes and I use them to my advantage. I think what separates me is my coachability and the fact that I can recognize my own weaknesses and have the willingness to improve on them.
VYPE: What is something people don't know about Victor Philip?
PHILIP: I think what people may misunderstand about me, at first glance, is that even though I'm a big guy and play football, I'm really just a nice guy who likes to crack jokes.
This story appeared in the Inaugural VYPE Fort Bend ISD Fall Edition, which is now available to pick up at your local Fort Bend ISD High Schools.