After Cheering Stops. Passions Don’t
If ever there was an athlete whose blood has been infused with volleyball cells, Donald Suxho is it. Those V cells that continue to flow through his veins are hereditary.
Directly infused by his dad, Peter, who coached Albania’s National Volleyball Team for twenty years, Donald added spousal volleyball plasma when he married Olena, a Ukrainian/Greek Volleyball Professional and National Team member.
Donald Suxho’s personal story is movie material and reported in compelling detail by another SportsEdTV contributor, Victoria Georgieva.
This account, however, is about Donald Suxho paying off the IOU he says he owes to volleyball.
In 2014 when his famous Olympic and professional volleyball career reached the inevitable quiet that all athletes eventually meet, Donald Suxho applied much of the discipline the sport imbued in his persona to business.
His business successes and consults include online language learning, medical waste, and financial companies.
Admittedly, Donald says: “There’s an emptiness, a void. I burn for the game.”
He's able to treat the fever coaching his sons, Shane, Leo, and Marcus, and an occasional special talent like Lauren Davenport, daughter of Tennis Champion Lindsay Davenport. Shane, like Donald, is a setter for the University of Southern California.
“It’s not enough,” he says, “volleyball rescued us from the chaos of Albanian anarchy nightmare and introduced us to the American dream, so I feel like paying it forward to the game is my calling.”
What does that mean?
Suxho said he's not sure, though he has stepped over the commitment threshold and is determined to develop a volleyball-centric business of import that will amortize his debt to the game.
“I know there’s a wealth of information lurking inside of me that I can share with young volleyball athletes. I’ve thought about doing a series of videos I call Conversations with My 12-Year-Old Self,” he says.
Over time he has accumulated a champion’s wisdom by emulation, innovation, participation and aggravation. He’s been known to call it his Suxhollence and realizes the grit of his hard earned expertise has value for volleyball coaches and athletes.
“Suxhollence,” Donald says, “is the aggregated knowledge and skills and training procedures that comes from decades of dedicated attention to detail in areas that affect performance like technique and tactics.”
He calls his nutrition, exercise, and strength training methodologies rigorous and volleyball specific—even position specific and are the foundation of the champions’ manifesto he’s committed to produce.
He knows he has a circle of influence in social media, accruing nearly 30,000 followers which could become the foundation for some of the concepts he’s exploring.
“I’ve also thought about creating volleyball leagues mirroring the success of baseball’s Cal Ripken’s involvement with Babe Ruth baseball leagues,” he said.
Given the ardor and tumultuous life challenges and the peaks, valleys, suspense, and successes of Donald Suxho’s life, there’s a pretty good bet a book is in the offing.
Suxho, agrees, but says a recounting of his exploits doesn't meet the criteria he has set to repay the volleyball IOU he intends to burn.
"I think I can begin by contributing to athletes like myself, not just volleyball athletes, who have finished competition and want to complete a career connected to their sport somehow.”
“Since my plan exists as a blank page right now, I’ll be asking myself a lot of questions, seeking counsel from others, collating input, and eventually end up with strategy and tactics that will build a real Suxho Thank You to Volleyball,” he said.
In the interim, he plans to share his Suxho Thanks Volleyball Diary of his next life’s volleyball journey in hopes of saving SportsEdTV athletes who someday may shiver in the silence of quieted cheers.
Look for Suxho authored updates at SportsEdTV.