Bri Scott is Team Connection’s stellar volleyball account manager, she played Big Ten volleyball at The Ohio State University, has coached and even co-founded ProVolley Training, which exists to provide a fun and competitive learning environment for high school teams, as well as a skill tune-up for individuals looking to improve their game. She’s sharing her #sportfuelslife journey with us in today’s blog post! Read on to get to know more about this stellar member of our team!

How have sports have positively impacted your life?

Sport has positively impacted my life by introducing me to relationships (like my husband, for example!) and the friendships I have today. It has taught me so many life lessons that drive me not only in sport  but also in the corporate world, as a parent and wife, and in regular everyday situations. These lessons include how to work hard, set and achieve goals, be a leader, and how to be a great teammate and role model. Sport has also allowed me to travel all over the U.S. and throughout the world.

When did you first realize that volleyball was your sport?

Initially, I really thought basketball was going to be my sport! I grew up watching my brother and sister play. My dad coached me, and we always had a very competitive/successful team growing up. Volleyball wasn’t introduced to me until I was in middle school, and I didn’t play at a very high level (competitive club volleyball) until I was in high school. I played as a setter, I’m 6’2”, and I’m from a small town in say I stuck out, is an understatement. I played just about every sport growing up, which helped my athletic abilities. Once I became more involved with a competitive club, I began traveling more (my very first flight was when I was 16, and I was going to a volleyball tournament). I was drawing the attention of recruiters and being seen by colleges and universities. Once the recruiting letters started to roll in, I was given the opportunity to play this sport I loved at an increasingly higher level. That’s when it was pretty clear that volleyball was my sport.

Who would you say are your sports heroes?   

My parents. As I mentioned earlier, my dad coached me in basketball growing up. He also coached me in softball. He taught me how to work hard and even though I’m his daughter, he didn’t give special privileges. He made me earn my playing time. My parents would encourage me to put in the extra work, and they taught me that things don’t just happen by sitting back and hoping for something great to happen. My parents also allowed me to be a multi-sport athlete and drove me from basketball straight to volleyball and got up at 3am on the weekends to take me to tournaments and power leagues. They taught me how to stand up for myself, because they were not going to be the ones who spoke to a coach on my behalf. They were my biggest fans and, of course, my transportation! They are the real sports heroes because they gave up their time, energy and money so that I could have the chance to live my dreams and that helped to open a world of opportunity for me. 

My other sports hero is my husband, Damien. He is blessed with very athletic capabilities, but his work ethic and determination have helped take him to a different level, and have enabled him to be successful in everything he does. His sport has also been volleyball his entire life, and when he faced some challenges with volleyball during college, he decided to test out football, a sport he had never played before. He knew he could handle the workload, but he was intrigued to give his body a different focus physically and to test his limits in a different way. He made the team, which is a testament in itself to his “never give up” attitude. He also continued to play volleyball (since they were different seasons). In his final season of volleyball, he led his team to the National Championship! He amazes me every day with what he can accomplish. He has now retired from playing (after a professional career of 7 seasons), but carries that same work ethic, determination, and must win attitude in his career.

Finally, Kobe. To be honest, I didn’t follow Kobe Bryant very much before his tragic passing. I knew he was an amazing athlete, but hearing all of the incredible stories from people who knew him well, I have learned how hard he worked and what a genuine person he was, even with all of his successes. I would say he has become one of my sports heroes. 

How did you prepare on game day? Did you have any rituals or certain music that helps you get ready to play?

Going through our serve & pass the morning of game day, pre-game meal, nap, and then back to the gym for an extra long warm up before we played. I wasn’t very superstitious to have the same ritual last more than a couple weeks in a season. If we lost, the ritual was done and I had to find something different!

When volleyball was in off-season, how did you keep your body physically and mentally fit?

Learning from our awesome strength coaches helped with that! Looking back, I feel like I took it for granted. Now, I’m not afraid of the word “cardio” and I love to get my workouts in every morning before everyone else is up!

What are three life lessons you never would have known without playing volleyball?

  1. Failing is not a bad thing–it’s what you learn from failing and how to bounce back to be better than next time.
  2. Perfection is not possible to achieve every time you step on the court. For example, a really good hitting percentage for an outside hitter in volleyball is 300. This means, if a player takes 10 swings and gets 4 kills out of those 10 swings, but 1 error, she is hitting 300. (4 kills - 1 error = 3/10 attempts = .300) That’s 4 points out of 10 attempts to hit the ball. When hearing it like that, it doesn’t sound too impressive, but that’s actually a great hitting percentage and it’s not perfect.
  3. Continue to do what you love for as long as you can. There are many opportunities in life, and I think I’ve had a career in almost every single capacity that is volleyball! I was a player, a coach, a director, a marketer and promoter, and also have worked in sales. I’m blessed to have these opportunities.

Why do you personally believe that Sport Fuels Life?

Sport Fuels Life because it keeps us working hard, it keeps us healthy physically and mentally, it entertains us, and it teaches us lessons about camaraderie, leadership, work ethic, goal setting, and how to recover from failure.