Monday, August 5, 2013

Richmond's Amber Nichols on her Redskins internship, her NBA cuz and Spider basketball, too

There's internships and then there's really cool internships, and if we say so ourselves, Richmond's Amber Nichols landed herself a dream summer. Nichols, a senior guard with the Spiders, is an intern for the Washington Redskins during training camp. We talked with her about that, her really cool cuz John Wall and got around to some Spiders basketball, too.

On interning with the 'Skins...

Every day I get to coordinate and create the NFL play zone area for kids, and I get to run them through NFL drills. It's designed to keep kids active and to promote a healthy environment for kids. I also get to work with VIP sponsors and monitor kids club signups. I get to help out with the VIP tents. We also had a kids press conference where kids were allowed to interview some of the players. I was able to coordinate that. I also get to work the kids zone area when the players actually come over and sign autographs. That's when I first encountered RG3.

No doubt RG3 is the signature everybody wants. Is there a second most popular autograph?

It's overwhelmingly RG3. He gets the most cheers. At camp, the kids rush to him. Santana Moss is another big name. Brian Orakpo. Ryan Kerrigan and DeAngelo Hall.

So what's the Redskins QB really like?

He's cool. He's very humble. He loves the fans. Every afternoon he sprints down the sidelines to give the fans high fives. He just got cleared to play, and he risks all that to give the fans what they want. He sparks their moods up because they're in the heat all day. He really likes kids. He'll pick a couple of kids to walk down the field with him every day. The funniest part was when I was talking to him when he was signing autographs he wasn't aware that his mother had been signing autographs at camp, too. I handed him a ball and he saw a signature that said, 'RG3 mom,' and he asked, 'Who's signing RG3 mom?' and I told him, 'Your mom!'

Were you a Redskins fan before?

My dad has been a Redskins fan for years. I was born the year they won the SuperBowl (1992).  There's a jacket my dad has from that SuperBowl. I bought my dad a jersey and I got RG3 to sign it.

Does the internship relate to your major?
Her cuz at high school graduation.

I'm a sociology major. I want to go to grad school for sports management. The ultimate goal is to work
in marketing in the NBA. I love basketball. I know it like the back of my hand. I could talk basketball all day. Coach (Michael) Shafer tells me that all the time. Hopefully, I can get a job as a marketing manager or a CEO of marketing of one of the teams.

Speaking of the NBA, your cousin is John Wall (Washington Wizards). How close are you guys?

We're close. We've been close since middle school. He was at high school (Needham Broughton in Raleigh, N.C.) with me my ninth grade year and he was a sophomore and he got cut from the team, so he went to a private school (Word of God Christian Academy). I went to the draft when he got drafted. I went to Kentucky probably three times when he played there. I've been to 10 or 15 Wizards games so far since he's been playing. I sit courtside.

You never know who you'll meet at a Kentucky game.
I got to meet LeBron at a Kentucky game John was playing in. I think it was Kentucky vs. Arkansas and LeBron showed up to the game. After the game, he came back to the locker rooms toward the media area and I got to take a picture with LeBron.

We're guessing your cousin is your favorite player?

He's my favorite. Him and Dwyane Wade.

You root for the Wizards?

I'm a Miami fan.

You must have loved Game 6.

When Ray Allen hit that shot in the corner, I think I might have celebrated like I was on the team.

Since you're so into marketing, any ideas for the women's game?

I think we should have certain things that the men don't have. I think there should be more televised games and there should be more women's Big Blue madness events. I know Richmond doesn't have one. Maybe having a college all-star game for women might work.

Talk about Richmond basketball and the upcoming season.

I'm very excited. I think my teammates have untapped potential. We re-evaluated ourselves individually and as a team at the end of last year, and we reinvested to this one sort of concept, and it's called purpose. That means we're playing for each other and for our coaches instead of ourselves. We have a lot of pieces. We're going to be more athletic than we've been in the past. Becca (Wann) is going to be great, of course. Kris (King) is coming back, too. She's going to have a great senior year. Gen (Okoro) is practicing and working out and looks great. Our freshmen are good, too. We have Liv Healy and Janelle Hubbard. Those two are really good.

Prediction on the Redskins season?

I think they're going to go deep in the playoffs. I don't know whether they'll win a Super Bowl or not, but from what I see, they're going to be pretty good.

1 comment:

  1. You go Amber....we are all so proud of you...Cousin George & Betty Jones