Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Matt McChesney Talks Mike Elston & Aidan Keanaaina

May 31, 2019

As one of the top trainers in the country, Matt McChesney has college coaches from around the country popping in to Six Zero Strength & Fitness in Colorado to visit with him and talk about his players, many of whom are top national prospects.

Notre Dame defensive line coach Mike Elston is one of those college assistants and he’s made a positive impression on McChesney with his humility.

“You can’t get back time, so anybody who is willing to spend it, doesn’t have an ego and doesn’t look at his own resume and say, ‘I’m something,’” says McChesney, who played offensive and defensive line in the NFL for six seasons with the New York Jets, Miami Dolphins and Denver Broncos.

“We’re all the same. We may not all be equal, but we’re damn sure all of the same. That’s something I learned from Herm Edwards a long time ago when I was a rookie and has resonated with me my whole life. Coach Elston is genuine.”

NCAA rules prohibit Elston from visiting the facility to recruit prospects, but McChesney understands part of Elston’s job is to form relationships with those closest to his recruits.

“So, of course he’s going to be genuine because we’ve got players,” says McChesney. “At the same time, this is the United States of America, people are in business to help each other. That’s the way it works.

“Coach Elston does (stuff) right and I respect anybody who is willing to come on a recruiting trip to Denver and spend 90 minutes with me on the board talking about technique and the way he wants his guys taught. I’m learning too. I know quite a bit. Coach Elston is a big-time d-line coach and I’m trying to learn as much as humanly possible. I played both ways, so I’m in there talking to him about different offensive line techniques and what I learned from playing both positions.”

McChesney appreciates the opportunity to be spend time with coaches like Elston.

“It’s just awesome to be around people who are like-minded because there aren’t a lot of them in Colorado,” he says. “I’m not saying that about the colleges, I’m saying that about the community. It’s a hobby here. I’m trying really, really hard to change the way people look at it here.

“Elston is a worker and I just respect the (hell) out of his hustle.”

Elston and the Irish are recruiting multiple players who work with McChesney and already have one, 2020 defensive lineman Aidan Keanaaina‍, committed. McChesney is glad Keanaaina will have the chance to work with somebody like Elston, but believes he would be successful regardless.

 “I’d be comfortable sending him to a Daffy Duck coach honestly because Aidan is a hustler,” McChesney says. “But (even more so) just knowing that he’s going to play for Coach Elston and how long Coach has been there with his family rooted in the community. He’s a Michigan Wolverine, so if he’s been at Notre Dame that long, he must really love the place.

“I think AK is in a good position right now with the rest of this offseason and summer in front of him, the four/five-day-a-week regimen we’re on right now with training, technique, film, progression, flexibility and all of this other stuff we’re doing.”

McChesney has challenged Keanaaina to treat his senior season at J.K. Mullen High School as his redshirt season at Notre Dame and to be prepared to contribute for the Irish in 2020.

“Football is too violent to wait,” he says. “What are you waiting for? Let’s get ready to play now. Go to Notre Dame and contribute for three years and go to The League. That should be his goal.”

“He has the ability to be that guy and he’s going to bust his ass because that’s who he is. Coach Elston got himself one helluva player. He’s going to be a monster.”

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