Nick Tiano: Tennessee Chattanooga's Sleeper Quarterback
Nick Tiano, former Mississippi State/Tennessee Chattanooga quarterback and recent Texans’ signee, joins us on the Pro Mindset Podcast. Nick has had a passion for football at a very young age and has always wanted to be the quarterback. Growing up in the south Nick talks about how important football was to his town and his family. He quickly became a highly sought after quarterback prospect for multiple Division 1 football programs. He decided on Mississippi State even though he had numerous schools making some tempting offers after he committed. When asked about why he stuck with his decision to go to Mississippi State Nick said, “I didn’t want to go back
on a promise.” His first year at Mississippi State he was red-shirted and went under the wing of the senior year quarterback Dak Prescott. Nick says he learned so much in that year from Dak and thinks a lot of his success is attributed to that year of learning. When speaking about Dak Nick said, “He's probably the best leader I've ever been around. You know, the guys in our locker room would have run through a wall for him. You know, he was the hardest worker in the room, which everybody respects obviously. He kinda just set the standard every day with his attitude. Dak never had a bad day. He showed up the same guy every single day and he worked his tail off and everybody followed. And we had a lot of success and that's kind of the model that I've tried to follow.” Unfortunately, after that red-shirt year, the Mississippi coaching staff decided to go in another direction for their starting quarterback. Nick ended up transferring to Tennessee Chattanooga, which is in a less competitive conference compared to Mississippi State. “I went from being 19 years old thinking that I'm going to win the Heisman trophy too, you know, taking five snaps the entire season and having to transfer. It was a very humbling experience, especially because I put everything I had into it, you know, my mind and my heart was set on being the starting quarterback, Mississippi state. And while I would have loved that experience I'm thankful for the way things have gone because I think it's made me the person I am today. You know, dealing with that and having to overcome that.”
Luckily, Nick thrived at Tennessee Chattanooga and was able to showcase his skills to the rest of the country. Nick has a knack for understanding defenses and knowing what play is coming before the snap. He studies film constantly and believes that hard
work comes on and off the field. He is also a proven leader which he attributes this leadership skills in large part to Dak Prescott. “I love the leadership aspect of it. You know, being a quarterback, you gotta be the leader of the team and I love being in that role and leading guys. Pushing guys and kinda setting the tone for the team.” When asked what he brings to the table that most quarterbacks do not, Nick answered with his ability to lead and make other players better around him. “I'm just trying to be a constant voice and leader for our team and being a positive influence on everybody throughout the game. Winning or losing.”
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