Jay DeMerit has one of the most unique stories to success the sport of soccer has ever seen. An MLS reject that backpacked to Europe and climbed the English soccer pyramid from the 12th tier to become the captain of Watford FC in the English Premier League. He also represented the US Mens National Team for five years, playing every minute of his teams games in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. In 2011 he became the first ever signing & captain for the Vancouver Whitecaps in MLS. He finished his career in 2014, after captaining the Vancouver Whitecaps for four seasons.
Using his vast experience in professional soccer, Jay will share the highs and the lows he’s endured along his journey through his 10-year professional career. Highlights are the season of 2006-07, where Jay and his underdog Watford FC team were promoted to the English Premier League, the biggest soccer league in the world, as well as his experiences in playing a major role in the World Cup in 2010. Defining leadership traits, dealing with adversities, identifying commonality between diverse personalities, creating culture, and role management are just a few things Jay will touch on, as well as how he learned to lead from others through mentorship, and then grow into captain himself.
Jay has taken the stage at Tedx Vancouver, spoken at a wide variety of national conferences, and has even been the keynote speaker on “Grit” at the US Soccer Federation’s annual symposium. His story was the subject of “Rise & Shine: The Jay DeMerit Story” a documentary released in 2011 after a successful kickstarter campaign, where the passionate soccer community raised $223,000 to turn this important story into a feature film.

Changing the Game is also excited to announce that Jay is our newest member of our stellar lineup of world class speakers. He has a very compelling story, a tremendous amount of wisdom for young players and coaches, and is an excellent speaker that captivates his audiences. We are excited to have him on board.

Click Here to Subscribe and Listen on iTunes

Find Jay and his documentary:

Rise and Shine: Watch the Trailer

Buy the DVD: Rise and Shine on Amazon


His TEDx Talk: Watch it here

On Twitter: @d6Merit

Show Notes:
7:00 When Jay became a soccer player
12:30 On Learning to adapt to the opportunities
18:00 Why choosing life experiences made the difference
22:00 On being a pub league sub
29:45 Be ready when the big break knocks on the door
36:30 What it means to be a team player
44:00 The world’s most expensive game
51:00 Coming home was the toughest thing
56:30 One of Jay’s greatest accomplishments
59:15 Jay’s advice to young players

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