TO BE A DESTROYER: COACH MCCLURE

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The Portsmouth Destroyers Football Hall of Fame has 8 members enshrined. The latest member to have been inducted is our subject today.

Coach Adam McClure represents and embodies what it means to be a Portsmouth Destroyer. With 5 seasons as a player, 4 coaching (to date) & 5 playing senior football, coach McClure is nothing short of experienced when it comes to football.

In order to be eligible for the honour, a player must have retired or been inactive for at least 1 year.  Anybody may nominate a player by first discussing it with the previous Hall of Famers (HOFers). This is then decided upon by the senior HOFers in regards to the player’s contribution and achievements whilst representing the Portsmouth Destroyers during his time with the team.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO THE READERS?

Hi I’m Adam, but most people call me McClure. At undergrad I studied Property, Marketing, Design & Development. Then went on to study my Masters in Property Development at the University of Portsmouth.

COULD YOU LET US KNOW HOW IT FEELS TO BE ONE OF THE FEW INDIVIDUALS IN PORTSMOUTH DESTROYERS HISTORY TO BE INDUCTED IN THE CLUB’S HALL OF FAME?

Where can I start? First of all it’s an Honour! When I was inducted it was a complete surprise to me. 

WHAT WOULD YOU SAY BEST DESCRIBES YOU?

I personally think I am laid back & chilled, unless its game time then I’m pretty pumped up!

Like all previous interviews, we were keen to find out more about coach McClure and his football background.

SO TELL US, HOW DID YOU COME TO PLAYING FOOTBALL FOR THE DESTROYERS?

Well, it is largely thanks to my mate Rich from college. We spoke about trying it out before going to Pompey but after getting to Portsmouth and discovery the purple nectar that is Snakebite, I happened to miss Freshers fair and the recruitment day. But luckily, he had put both our names down for the combine, and it went on from there.

IN WHAT WAY DID YOUR TIME IN PORTSMOUTH INFLUENCE YOU?

In every way, life experience’s, relationships, everything. Without Pompey I wouldn’t be who or where I am today.

In what ways did your time at Portsmouth influence you?

IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY BEST DESCRIBES PORTSMOUTH DESTROYERS AS A TEAM?

Mental toughness! No matter what the situation, the player will keep playing and fighting! 

OH YEAH? SO FROM THAT, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY WAS YOUR FAVOURITE MEMORY AS A PLAYER?

It has to be winning the National Championship in 2011. The season was hard fought and it still remains to be one of the best memories the old boys during my time have.

WHICH TEAM DID YOU ENJOY PLAYING AGAINST THE MOST DURING YOUR SEASONS

Haha, it’s a toss up between Southampton University “Stags” or Southampton Solent “Redhawks” because of the local rivalries, but probably slightly more competitive with Redhawks due to many of their players being my team mates during Adult season football for the Thrashers.

Credits: Tom Burn

Credits: Tom Burn

IS THERE ANYWHERE IN PORTSMOUTH CAMPUS THAT HOLDS ANY SPECIAL MEMORIES OF YOUR UNIVERSITY DAYS?

Not technically on campus, but it has to probably be 24 Eldon Street AKA “House of U”, our last house in Pompey as students! It was pretty much a continuous party house with a revolving door as everyone was in and out all the time!

TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR SENIOR FOOTBALL

Well, I used to play O-line and alternated to D-line. With experience in both sides of the ball, I can play both sides now.

Credits: Jason Brown Photography

No doubt Coach McClure can hold it down with the best of them on the field We delved into many more questions keeping the tone light and the conversation flowing.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE COLOUR?

Depends on the situation and my mood, but I don’t like beige, its just meh!

A MAN WITH YOUR FOOTBALL BACKGROUND HAS TO SUPPORT AN NFL TEAM. WHICH TEAM ARE YOU A FAN OF AND WHY?

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers of ofcourse! When I was younger and first getting into American football, our Family Holidays to the Gulf Cost of Florida meant we flew into Tampa. I thought it would be one of my best chances to go see a game in person!


HOW DOES IT FEEL TO HAVE TRANSITIONED FROM PLAYER TO COACH?

It’s an odd one, my first year coaching was difficult as I was still in the player mentality. I wanted to get in for reps and show the players what to do. What was also hard was having to coach guys I used to play alongside. It is an odd feeling as you're no longer their peer and have to tell them what to do. 

My coaching position is the O-Line, I like to influence them by teaching them sound fundamentals and techniques.

IN YOUR OWN OPINION WHICH SIDE OF THE BALL WINS GAMES? OFFENCE OR DEFENCE?

Offence wins Games, Defence wins Championships. It is a cliché, but it’s true.

AS A COACH, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE LOOKING TO PLAY THE SPORT FOR THE FIRST TIME?

Just give it a go! Try the different positions and work as hard as you can, but still enjoy it!

AS AN EX STUDENT WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE STUDENTS FOR LIFE AFTER UNIVERSITY?

Like football really, work hard at it and you’ll be rewarded, but remember to enjoy the moment as well, no point working hard for no play!

FINALLY OUR MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION. WHICH TWO TEAMS DO YOU PREDICT TO MEET AT THE SUPERBOWL?

Currently I can’t see past it being a Chiefs Rams match up…. Rams to take home the Lombardi 

This interview with coach McClure has been more than insightful. A true representation of what it takes to be a Portsmouth Destroyer. He went through the trenches with teammates, has seen players come and go as a coach, and is recognised for his dedication and commitment to the Portsmouth Destroyers.

Coach Adam McClure, a true Destroyer!

Portsmouth Destroyers

Home of the University of Portsmouth’s American Football organisation the Portsmouth Destroyers.