Phillippi Sparks (cont)
Posted: Thursday May 31, 2007 1:11PM; Updated: Thursday May 31, 2007 1:11PM
SI: What former teammates or former NFL players have you heard from?
Sparks; Brian Saxton, Marcus Buckley, Rodney Hampton, Jeremy Lincoln. Darren Woodsen called me and I saw Ray Buchanan in L.A.
SI: In the early rounds, you watched Idol sporadically. Why?
Sparks: Because I knew there was a bigger picture to what she was going. I knew what was going on. I would give her my advice and text her but we have a son who is 15 named P.J. and so my wife was with Jordan and I had my son.
SI: Does he play sports or sing?
Sparks: He is phenomenal football player and basketball player. This dude is an academic All-America. I had the opportunity to coach at Arizona State when Dirk Koetter was there. Koetter came up to me and put his arm around my son and said, Oh, we have another Devil here. My son looked at him and said, Only if Miami doesn't want me (laughs).
SI: You've been coaching football (defensive backs) at Glendale Community College?
Sparks: I was there but I am going to try to coach at Boulder Creek, which is a new high school near me.
SI: She's mentioned Larry Fitzgerald, Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire, Leandro Barbosa and Shawn Marion as her favorite athletes. She digs sports?
Sparks: Listen, we used to take Jordin to the Devils, the Nets and Broadway plays when we were in New Jersey. She opened up the Cardinals Stadium in 2006 by singing the national anthem. I'm telling you from East Coast to West Coast, it was the most remarkable anthem people have ever heard.
SI: So is she going to play the Super Bowl one day?
Sparks: I already have people from the Super Bowl talking to me. But I'm not going to say anything (laughs). Oops.
SI: What will Jordin do next?
Sparks: She is still doing high school. She's home schooled, doing it on the computer. She's very smart. There will also be a American Idol Tour.
SI: Do you miss football?
Sparks: Every day I miss it. I actually think I can play but everyone thinks they can still play. I miss it every day but I know there is a point in time where you have to let go. If I made a comeback they would probably laugh so I know one thing for sure: I cannot hold guys that are 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds and run a 4.3. That's for sure.
SI: Who was the best guy who ever went up against?
Sparks: I thought Terry Glenn and Marvin Harrison were beasts. Did I hold my own? Let's just say partly cloudy but fair (laughs).
SI: How much do you worry about the pressure on Jordin regarding things like her looks or weight or what people perceive an American Idol winner should look like?
Sparks: What is really cool is that Jordin does not care. She does not how people look at her. That was she is so special at 17. If she cared about that, she would have listened to the critics. She is a full-time model for Torrid Modeling [a fashion brand which empowers plus size young women] and that was a blessing.
SI: What's it like when the dream actually comes true?
Sparks: It's been something she has been working at for a mighty long time in her own eyes. Ever since she went to junior American Idol when she was 14, she told Randy Jackson that she would come back and win American Idol. And it actually happened.