Former John Curtis defender Michael Stonebreaker will enter the Soccer School Corridor of Fame in the course of the Trophy Dinner on December 5 in Las Vegas.
Stonebreaker, who performed at Notre Dame School, found his obsession when former school teammate Chris Zorich referred to as to share info that had simply been aired on ESPN forward of the sport. Nationwide Championship on Monday.
Stonebreaker thought there was an opportunity he might enter the Corridor when he was final nominated for the primary time in June. However the very first thing he requested was whether or not former Notre Dame defender Todd Lyght was additionally chosen.
“Todd and I performed at Notre Dame collectively and we each voted,” stated Stonebreaker, who discovered from Zorich that Lyght was not voted on by the previous gamers and coaches. “We wish to take part. That was a disappointment. “However being nominated and chosen is acknowledged by the Nationwide Soccer Fund and the crew, it’s an honor.”
Stonebreaker was the primary crew to twice decide Individuals and performed within the nationwide crew when Preventing Irish gained a title in 1988. He completed third within the Butkus Award within the 1988 and 1990 seasons when he registered 104 and 95 tips in these seasons, respectively. As well as, Stonebreaker has eight profession breaks and 5 interceptions, together with a return for touchdowns.
Firstly, Stonebreaker shall be among the many 49 Notre Dame gamers within the Corridor of Fame. That features former teammates Tim Brown, Raghib “Rocket” Ismail, Aaron Taylor and Zorich.
Additionally within the corridor have been Stonebreaker coach Lou Holtz and his protection coordinator Barry Alvarez.
“Once you begin enjoying soccer, and if you play soccer like me, I play as a result of I wish to play video games,” Stonebreaker stated. “I went up (to Notre Dame) and performed as onerous as I might. Once you try this, you come from a program like I got here from college. “John Curtis Christian Faculty, they educate you the fundamentals of soccer.”
Whereas at Curtis Stonebreaker performed on the crew that gained three consecutive state championships from 1983-85. He arrived at Notre Dame in 1986 and recalled how he made his first impression.
“Again then, Notre Dame’s strikers have been 6-foot-5, 6-7, 300 kilos,” stated the 6-foot-tall Stonebreaker. “They’re large individuals. I keep in mind going by means of every week or two of coaching to camp. “It was a grain of rice with one of many defenders and one of many attackers working after him.”
When it was Stonebreaker’s flip, “It was me in opposition to the offensive guard. I put my hand on his chest pad, stood up and hit the person with the ball behind the road of “Strike.”
“Persons are celebrating,” Stonebreaker stated. “It was all the time an enormous environment throughout these workouts.”
Stonebreaker talked about how coach Notre Dame eliminated one of many huge attacking midfielders and changed him with one other, and requested Stonebreaker to do it once more.
Stonebreaker remembers them, “Let’s run it once more.” “We ran it once more with the identical outcomes.”
“Okay, that is sufficient,” Stonebreaker remembered when he heard the coach communicate.
Stonebreaker gave a variety of credit score for what he discovered about enjoying linebacker to Leon Curtis, his highschool place coach.
“We’re taught to maintain the bottom and preserve your head on the spin and run to soccer and run after blockers,” Stonebreaker stated. “Based mostly on that, after I received to Notre Dame I used to be prepared for the following stage.”
After the Chicago Bears School chosen Stonebreaker within the ninth spherical of the 1991 NFL Draft. He performed three seasons within the league with the Bears, Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints.
His final two matches passed off whereas with the Saints in 1994. Stonebreaker father Steve performed seven NFL seasons, the final two video games in opposition to the Saints within the Nineteen Sixties.
Stonebreaker now owns and operates NO Brew Espresso, a hand-made espresso product. He has 4 daughters between the ages of 27 and 12.
Almost three many years have handed since Stonebreaker final performed soccer.
“It is onerous to look at soccer for me as a result of you are able to do nothing in regards to the consequence of the sport,” he stated. “When you want three targets for my part, you’re doing thrice and off the sector. “It is not enjoyable for me to look at when you possibly can’t management any outcomes.”
Sport has modified since he performed.
“It is an offensive league that focuses on scoring on the board,” he stated. “Some individuals suppose it is enjoyable to look at. ‘Oh 38-35, it is an incredible sport.’ Properly, it is a dangerous sport. That is how it’s organized: Your defender is your highest paid participant. They’re handled at totally different ranges. There have been 11 individuals on the sector. “Everyone seems to be an equal a part of the sport.”
Stonebreaker was one among 11 gamers on the Notre Dame protection and it was his intensive manufacturing as a defender that positioned him within the Corridor of Fame soccer academy.