Jesse Newell: What's your ritual before the game?
Darrell Stuckey: Just kind of similar to meditation - thinking over my responsibilities and my different assignments and kind of praying. Just self-talk. Positive self-talk.
JN: When you talk about meditation, people have a certain image of that. How does it work?
DS: I just kind of sit in my locker and face out toward the middle of the room. I have my iPod in, playing music or whatever. But yeah, just praying and kind of talking to myself. Positive self-talk.
JN: I saw you are a motivational speaker. Tell me about that.
DS: I feed off energy - I feed off other people's energy and the surrounding environment around me. I give speeches a lot. I actually just gave a speech for David Lawrence's FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) group at Free Methodist on 31st. : This week, I gave a motivational speech just about relationships and handling them - different types of relationships and stuff. I firmly believe that we, as athletes, have a duty to give back to the people and the youth, especially if we grew up and didn't have anybody to look up to or didn't know who our role models really were. They look up to us, so we have to make sure they know who we are, and we allow them to see that we are a positive influence and that we are positive people.
JN: What's your favorite Mark Mangino story?
DS: It probably was when he gave a story about the gangster in his neighborhood when he was growing up.
JN: What was that story?
DS: It was about a guy that really wasn't doing too much with his life, basically doing stuff that was gang-related. He was tied within the mob or something like that. And he was talking about how all the adults were scared of him, and how as kids, you don't really know who to have fear of except the people that your parents tell you to.
So what happened was the guy would come through the neighborhood every Sunday, and one day, (Mark) hit a ball, and it bounced and hit the guy's car as he was driving by. And the guy stopped the car and got out, and they all got scared. And all the parents got nervous. And the guy got out and said, 'If you're going to hit the ball, hit the ball,' and he started playing baseball with them for hours.
He was talking about how the guy was a good guy, but it still caught up with him. He was talking about doing the wrong thing still catches up with you. It was an analogy about always doing the right thing. The guy was a good guy, but he did the wrong things with his life, and he's dead now. Basically, he was talking about how you can't hide the wrong things for too long until it comes out.
JN: So that stuck with you?
DS: That was just one of the many speeches he gave. I listen to a lot of different things he says. We're all listening or talking to him. I believe that everything that is said to you or going on in your life is going to mold you in some way. You need to take something out of everything you learn or that you come in contact with, because every day is a new day.