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Jimmy Conrad is an American soccer defender, who currently plays for the Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer and the United States national team. He is also team captain[…]

How do steroids feed into the American drive to win?

Question: How do steroids feed into an American drive to win?

Jimmy Conrad: Yeah, I think, yeah I don’t think the steroids thing is good at all, I think it is clear that those guys that did it are not very good role models and are ultimately very selfish in their decision making, I don’t even know if it was about winning for them as a most or I think it was more about either breaking records or just staying in the lime light and being a good guy or it just means somebody that people idolize, I think it is very sad to feel like you need that feeling of everybody looking up to you all the time, I actually came wait for that the past. I don’t even know if people look up to me, I shouldn’t even go there before that, but I am the oldest of the seven so I already have a built in, they have to look up to me because I am the oldest, but in terms of winning, I just think it is an American mentality that we have to win at all cost, I think you can see it in the American politics today, foreign policy that is just how we are built, I think that is what how the system has been set up, how have we claimed independence you know that we are going to win at all cost and just kind of just stuck with us the whole time and when we get immigrants in they get into it too, I just, they are not a free of that as well, I mean it is I appreciate all cultures but they give they buy into the American mentality as well and I just think of the youth level for kids, it would just be nice for them to allow them to kind of spread their wings to see if they really like the games, do they really enjoy it without feeling those constant pressure to have to win all the time and I would like to develop a program that gets away from that kind of thinking, that kind of mentality and focus more on, seeing what the kids what they bring to the table, as opposed to force feeding them, what we want them to bring, so that is for me, I guess get back to a new question for how I would fit in to kind of bridging the gap and my role within youth, and where I want to go what I think it where should be.

Question: Should athletes turn down medical treatments that could give them an edge?

Jimmy Conrad: Not well, yeah there is a line, I think yeah, I mean yeah that gives them that edge, yeah they should have, they should turn it down I think there should just be a standard whatever I mean I guess the argument is if everybody is on steroids and there is no edge, so I don’t think there should be an edge, I have a lot more respect for like Hank Allan who is, who clearly set the record, I mean if you look at his body type, it means like did it on raw natural ability, I mean may be he pops some ibuprofen or some aspirant to keep him going, but everybody does, whether you are playing sports or not, so you know I don’t know, I don’t think any position should be able to garner an edge if you get hurt, then just take the time to heal and get back, we all get hurt, we all have ups and downs in our career and you know rushing back to be a hero is good in some fashion I suppose and that is another thing that fits into the American psyche is that and I fight that, I try to be a hero and try to play through stuff that like looking back on my what was I doing and so it is clear that the guys are taking steroids, well some of them have that regret, some of them clearly don’t and like to be you know talked about still, but I don’t know, no I don’t think I say I will say no, my short answer is no, I don’t think anybody should garner an edge I think, I have a lot more respect for the guys that play it straight and just if they beat you, then they were just better than you on that day.

Question: What about equipment?

Jimmy Conrad: Yeah, you know in terms of cleats, I think it is huge spheres, I don’t think it really matters, I think like probably goes for swimmers too, I am sure Michael Phelps could tell you that, it is really not going to alter his thing, he is just going to swim as hard as he can and right now he is the best swimmer in the world, so I don’t think equipment makes that much of a difference, I think if anything is just psyching and I can speak a to support that with, there is just some shoes I am sponsored by Adidas and there is some shoes that they have, that they have made in the past, that I just love and I feel like Zidane when I put them on and then in some shoes they have made that I don’t I feel like I should never play soccer again and so it is just, it is more of a mentality, it is more if the product you are wearing has given you confidence to feel like you can be better than you can be, so ultimately that is a mind thing.

Recorded On: 3/24/08