Jordan Neuman glad to call Schwäbisch Hall home

American Football is now an international sport, being played in more than 90 countries all over the world! This great sport is taking people all over the globe and introducing them to various cultures in the process. “The Import” series allows players to share their unique travels and experiences about American Football being played internationally, but players are not the only imports involved with football internationally. Coach Jordan Neuman has been kind enough to share his import experience with me.

Biography

Jordan Neuman is a 35 year old Head Coach from Fort Worth, Texas. Photo credit: Manfred Löffler

Jordan Neuman had great success with the Vienna Vikings during his three seasons with the team. He helped the Vikings win two Austrian Bowls and an Eurobowl Championship.Jordan Neuman has 10 years of coaching experience in the highest levels in Europe. He began his career in Germany, with the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns, as Offensive Coordinator.  After two seasons, Neuman took his talents to Vienna, to become the Offensive Coordinator for the Vienna Vikings in the AFL.

In 2014, Neuman returned to the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns. He spent three seasons as the Offensive Coordinator for the Unicorns, and became the Quarterbacks Coach for the German National Team. He was the Quarterbacks Coach when the German National team won the European Championships in 2014. Neuman helped the Unicorns reach 3 consecutive German Bowls during that three-year span. In 2017, Jordan Neumann became the Head Coach of the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns. Since then, the Unicorns are 34-0 with 2 German Bowl Championships.

COACHING INTERNATIONALLY

How many seasons/years have you been coaching in Europe/overseas?

10

Which team was your best experience?

The experiences were very different. Schwäbisch Hall and Vienna are two of the best programs in Europe, and both programs have two completely different philosophies on how to do things.  Neither philosophy is better than the other, but it was great to see how both work.

Neuman played college ball at McMurry University.

Which country was your best experience?

Both Austria and Germany are great countries to live in!  There are some similarities, but not as much as you might think, besides both being German-speaking countries.  But at the end of the day, Schwäbisch Hall is my home.

How did you get to your current position? What’s your football journey?

I came over in 2005 to play Quarterback for the Unicorns.  I played 4 years and then started coaching as the Offensive Coordinator here, in the 2009 season.  In 2011, I made the switch to the Vienna Vikings for 3 seasons as the Offensive Coordinator.  I then returned home to Hall, as the Offensive Coordinator from 2014-2016.  Also, in 2014 I started working as the Quarterbacks Coach for the German National Team.  Since 2017, I have been working as the Head Coach here in Schwäbisch Hall.

LIFE IN EUROPE

Photo Credit: Hannes Jirgal

How do you like living in Europe?

I love it here in Europe! I met my wife here, and this became home for me very quickly.  Germany/Austria put a lot of emphasis on quality of life, and that’s clear by the organization and set up of the countries.  Not to mention, they are two of the most beautiful countries in the world in my opinion. These are both great places to live!

How do you like the people in Europe?

My experiences have been very positive with the people in Europe.  I believe it goes back to the emphasis placed on quality of life, and generally I feel people are very happy here.  More specifically, the people I have come across or worked with, in the different teams I have been a part of, have been great.  Some of my closest relationships are now with the people I have met here in Europe.

What is your go to meal in Europe? 

Steak and Potatoes

Do you spend a lot of time with local players & coaches or on your own/with other imports?

If I am not doing football, I spend as much time as I can with my family.

FOOTBALL IN EUROPE

What level would you compare the football played in Europe to in the United States?

After talking with NFL Scouts when they were looking at Moritz Böhringer, they put the top level of European Football at a Division 3 Playoff or mid Division 2 level.  I would say I agree with that, but I would make one addition.  There are pockets of the game that are at a Division 1 level out here.  For example, in the German Bowl when Tyler Rutenbeck (WR) was going against Fernando Lowery (DB) that’s D1 football right there without question!

What are some of the coaching challenges in Europe?

The biggest challenge is just not having your entire team located on campus, 10 minutes from the facilities.  With that dynamic, as a coach, you have to be able to adjust and adapt to each individual player’s situation.

Neuman is the winner of back-to-back German Bowls with the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns. Photo credit: Hannes Jirgal

What are some of the benefits to coaching in Europe?

German Football has become such a highly competitive game, with so many teams extremely motivated to win.  With that, it has raised the level of everything you, as an organization, must do to win games.  Working in that environment is a lot of fun for our coaches and players.  Plus, I have to add, coaching such great high-level athletes is a lot of fun as well.  Does not matter if it’s the imports or the National players.  The talent level has jumped so much, that seeing these athletes do what they do is a lot of fun to be a part of.

What do you see as some of the biggest differences between football in the states compared to Europe?

To me the biggest difference, and the final gap, between Europe and the States is the system set up, which in turn, is the reason in America you can practice and meet 6-7 times a week.  It has everything to do with players being on campus right next to the facilities, and everyone having a schedule that is set in such a way to where certain times are blocked for practice.  Simply put, it’s the amount of practice time you can have in the States, is the biggest difference between football here in Europe and football in America.

How have you personally helped your players and coaches develop their American Football knowledge during your time abroad?

We have a bunch of very smart and talented coaches in our program.  The most important thing I can do is, continue to push an environment where egos are set aside and every coach is free to share ideas and opinions that we all can learn from. I feel this makes our coaching staff better and pushes us all to move forward.  In the end, this pushing of new ideas will make its way down to the players, making them better, which is the ultimate goal.

LAST WORDS

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned coaching football internationally?

Things have to be extremely well organized down to the last detail, because you can not afford to waste a single second of the time you get with your players.

What advice would you give to someone coaching football in Europe/overseas for the first time?

Does not matter what country or what level you are coaching.  The players put in a lot of effort, and they deserve to have a coach who is working very hard and doing everything he can to put the players in a position to be successful.

Can you sum up what American Football means to you?

I love the parallels between football and life because both will give you joy, heartache, struggle, adversity, good times and bad, but its all about how you handle those situations that will determine if you are successful or not.

*I would like to thank Jordan for allowing me to share his experiences.

 

Disclaimer: This article is property of The Import Group, written with the intent to inform the international football community about various topics important to everyone involved.

Media outlets are allowed, and strongly encouraged to post this article on their websites, blogs, and social media channels, provided this disclaimer is included. Thank you for respecting the author rights of The Import Group.

 

AFI
American Football International is your source for news and updates about American Football outside the United States!
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