Real Talk with QBV #6: Personal Trainer and Boston College Alum CJ Parsons
Updated: Feb 27, 2021
On Thursday, July 23rd, QBV had another amazing conversation with CJ Parsons. Parsons is a former Football player at Xaverian Brothers High School, and even played Tight End at Boston College. He has a ton of Football experience and had a great career at BC.
CJ Parsons is now a certified personal trainer and runs his own training program called "Parsons Sports Performance" . We learned more about not just Football and family, but we learned about misconceptions with athletic training.
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Did you always play Football? Did you play any other sports growing up? Where did you grow up?
“Early life was good for me, I had two parents who loved me, one of four I was the oldest. Me, my little Sister and my younger brothers all athletes. My Dad played ball, Football and Baseball, played at Lafayette, made it to the bigs for a little bit he played a season and a half with the Broncos before blowing his knee up.
I was always raised playing sports, my Dad coached Little League and all of that growing up and taking trips to AAU tournaments just me and him. I was always playing things growing up I had a happy childhood growing up it was great.”
What made you go to Xaverian? What was your experience like?
“My Dad could tell you better, my Dad told me I had some sort of fascination with it, I don’t remember to much of that. I guess we went to a few games when I was in Elementary school, we would go to the Saturday games and I had some of fascination with it. I think it was big crowd, success and the tradition of success, I am sure that was a big factor.
I had in my head since I was 3, 4, 5 years old I was going to be a ball player, that was it. In Massachusetts, playing High School Football is limited compared to the rest of the country, Texas, Florida, New Jersey, California, very limited options compared to these other states. Xaverian was the spot, that was a big factor...”
What player did you admire growing up?
“My favorite player growing up, I thought I was a Quarterback, my favorite player growing up was Drew Bledsoe. Being from here, I was a big Drew Bledsoe fan. When the Pats weren’t winning super bowls yet, he was definitely one of them. Mike Vick was something to watch, in his prime he was one of a kind."
Can you tell us about the recruiting process?
“I wasn’t a big five-star recruit, where I had college coaches pouring out of the door. Rivals and some of the online recruiting type software's and the combine type camps were just starting to get big, me being the oldest child and my father not having experience with that, I kind of missed that. It was interesting because I knew I had potential to play big time ball somewhere, I didn’t get my first scholarship offer till pretty late into my Junior year. I think Northeastern was the first one, then I got a hand full of others that followed it.
Then I started getting some attention from UMass, then Marshall was my first D1-AA offer, BC, Duke and a few others. It wasn’t as exciting as some other guys. I did a couple of the official visits, don’t get me wrong it was exciting but in the back of my head I was frustrated I wasn’t getting noticed...”
Was there an initial shock when first training for Football? Being at Northeastern and changing to BC?
“So, this is more of a compliment to Coach Stevenson, then it is an attack at anyone else coach or staff, anything like that. When I got to camp at Northeastern, I was surprised at how much lesser of a jump I thought it was. That is because Xaverian is ran like a big-time college program, talk to Ken Warge, I think he had three or four coaches and twenty guys on the team and that blew my mind.
At Xaverian we had five Football teams, 150 guys wanted to play Football, fifteen, twenty assistants, and off the field guys it’s a real time program. I expected an even bigger jump, not that I was let down but I was like, ‘Ok I came from a big time High School, with an amazing staff.’ It was crazy!
Then the jump to BC there was a shock. It’s a D1 ACC school, I wasn’t shocked, I was ready, but I was like yeah, yeah, this is competition...”
What was it like when Northeastern pulled its football program?
“My true freshman year I had knee surgery, I took a red shirt, rehabbed it for the season and the following year the AD comes in and sits the team down, ‘Hey boys, we are terminating the Football program,’ and then he walked out. That caught everybody off guard, no one was expecting it.
I mean it was tough for everyone, there were a couple kids in my class who were preferred walk-on type guys, that worked there tail off and were promised scholarships and some of those people broke down because they had family toss some dough up, to help them with a year of paying and were expecting their final two, three years to be paid for and those guys were shit out of luck.