Justin Cotler on Coaching Ricky Garard: “I feel like I can be a good mentor to him”

October 6, 2021 by
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Last Wednesday, Ricky Garard went on the CrossFit Games podcast for his first public interview since receiving a four-year ban from competing in CrossFit sanctioned events and openly admitted to taking performance enhancing drugs. During the more than 90-minute-long interview, Garard also revealed he will now be coached by Justin Cotler, who also coaches Kari Pearce, Bethany Shadburne and Danielle Brandon. 

The Morning Chalk Up was able to sit down with Cotler and discuss his newest addition to Underdogs Athletics.

On how the Cotler and Garard partnership happened:

  • “On Coffee, Pods & Wods, Peter asked me who I might be interested in coaching. It was funny because on the spot I talked a little about Ricky and the fact that I thought I could be a good mentor for him and I never spoken to him before honestly.”
  • “Ricky reached out to me, really hat-in-hand, talking about how he was at a crossroads. He was following template training. He had spoken to a couple of coaches and hadn’t had any luck over the past few years with people wanting to work with him.”
  • “I spoke with him over a period of months, we spoke several times, and we had some super honest conversations.”
  • “I did my homework and spoke to some people I’m close with, who I trust that know Ricky.”

What Cotler said to Ricky for him to agree to bringing him on as an athlete:

  • “Listen, I feel like I can be a good mentor for you. I believe in second chances. But, it’s got to be my way. One hundred percent my way.”

We also discuss the past season for the Underdogs athletes including the 2021 NOBULL CrossFit Games and the future of the training camp as they look towards the offseason and the 2022 Games as well as the possibility of the camp putting together a team to compete at the Games.

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