Episode 027: Pat the Roc

Joel Epstein:
Morning, everybody. Coming in live from Washington DC to another great edition of The bigJOEL Show, where we have on awesome guests. Today is extremely exciting because I got Pat the Roc. If you don't know who Pat the Roc is, go ahead and start Googling now, check it out. Just put it all together, Pat the Roc, and you'll see, but you'll learn more about him right now. I got him live in the studio with me here, again in DC, and I think we're going to have a great conversation today about lots of cool things that can definitely help you with your business or just help inspire you in life all day. So welcome to the show, Pat. How you doing?

Pat the Roc:
Hey, I'm excited to be here. Thanks for having me.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, all good?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
All right, great. I hope you all see Pat. He's sporting his ... Put it up there, Pat. Show them. He's sporting it right there. There you go. Pat the Roc, you can look him up. So Pat, I'm going to let you give a little bio on yourself. It's such a interesting story. Pat is a famous US basketball player. I know you've been all over the world, but famous for lots of different things, and we're going to talk about that a little more. Just full disclosure, how I met Pat was my little guy who really loves basketball, we looked around for a place for him to go and start learning. We went in there and it's pretty incredible. We can talk more about that later, but that's how I met Pat, at his Skills Academy, which is actually in the DC area. So Pat, tell us a little bit about how did you even start in basketball.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. I was born and raised in Maryland. I'm a Maryland kid. When I was about five years old, I was introduced to the game of basketball by my mother.

Joel Epstein:
Your mom, huh?

Pat the Roc:
She played basketball. Yeah, so she started taking my brother and I to the park, and we would play Horse, Around the World, different shooting games. When we started to lose to her, it kind of gave us a competitive-

Joel Epstein:
Your brother older or younger?

Pat the Roc:
Older brother, yeah. So she would beat both of us, and that kind of gave us the motivation to work a little bit harder, and ever since then, we never stopped playing.

Joel Epstein:
Did you have a mom ... I don't know how you do, but in my house, no matter what game you were playing, when you won, you won. Because my grandparents, aunts, uncles, parents, my dad would beat us down. I mean, there's no winning. He'd win 100 to 0 and not care. But at least when you finally won, you knew you won. There was no ... Is that what you had with your mom? She was not going to let you win?

Pat the Roc:
I don't think I ever beat my mom.

Joel Epstein:
What?

Pat the Roc:
I don't think I ever beat her.

Joel Epstein:
You never beat her?

Pat the Roc:
Even now, she can still shoot. She was a great shooter, so that's where I got my skills from and I still respect her on the court to this day.

Joel Epstein:
On the court, yeah. And for those of you that don't know, Maryland ... Pat's from Southern Maryland, what we call Southern Maryland, but Prince George's County in Maryland is known ... How would you even say it? It's a bastion of basketball, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, some of the best basketball players to have went on to play collegiate and NBA have came from the DC/Maryland/Virginia area. It's definitely a hotbed for basketball players starting from the youth all the way to the elite.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah. No question, no question. So tell me your story. Five years old, you're getting beat by your mom on the court ... which I think is hilarious. That's awesome. I want to meet your mom now. Beating you down on the court, and so you said to yourself, "I like this. I'ma do something with this."

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. That's kind of where I got the passion from. I loved the game of basketball, and like I said, I had a older brother, and when you have a sibling, you want to be just like them. He started playing basketball and I wanted to do everything he wanted to do. He had good grades in school, so I had to get good grades in school. He was the best player on the team, so I wanted to be the best player. We had a great relationship growing up, and that kind of made me fall in love with the game of basketball.

Joel Epstein:
And so, where's the origin of Pat the Roc? For those of you that don't know, the Roc is the basketball, just putting it out there. For the origin, where'd that come from? Who hit you with that the first time?

Pat the Roc:
My real name is Pat, and the Roc is referred to as basketball. They said the way I dribbled the basketball was so quick, I wasn't dribbling, it was like I was patting it. So they gave it a name, Pat the Roc, and I earned that name playing-

Joel Epstein:
Oh, so it's Pat the Roc. It's not even Pat the Roc. That's interesting.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, it's Pat the Roc.

Joel Epstein:
I wouldn't have thought that.

Pat the Roc:
Because of the speed of the dribble.

Joel Epstein:
Okay, all right. So you carried a basketball everywhere with you?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. I used to take my basketball everywhere, now my basketball takes me everywhere.

Joel Epstein:
That's awesome.

Pat the Roc:
That was my thing.

Joel Epstein:
That's awesome. So along those lines, I love ... I don't know what the stats are or whatever, but when people talk about being professional or being really good at something or being an expert. I don't know what ... Someone's going to correct me on this. I don't know, 7,000 hours, 10,000 hours, you know those different books. I mean, did you just dribble everywhere? Everywhere you went, you were making people crazy?

Pat the Roc:
I literally took my basketball everywhere I went, and then I remember times taking it to school and the teacher said, "You can't bring your ball in class," and that's when I would practice with an imaginary basketball.

Joel Epstein:
Really?

Pat the Roc:
That love, that drive ... Anything that you want to do in life, I think you can't be ashamed of it. And so if you saw me, you knew that basketball is what I wanted to do.

Joel Epstein:
That was your thing, huh?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
So for people listening, one of the things in a lot of my audience ... most of my audience ... are salespeople, people selling things. It's a lot of mortgage, a lot of real estate agents, but there's other people watching as well that sell things. Everybody is into the shiny object. I always make a joke. If I spin a quarter right there, everyone's going to be like ... They're going to stare at that thing because if they could figure out a way to get something done faster and not do the work, they're going to do it. But I find when I interview people and I talk to people and my clients and people I know, the people that are true experts at what they do, true professionals, they have done the work. There's no they didn't do the work. These people that are like, "Yeah, three-hour workweek," that to me is a bunch of crap. Someone is lying. You must have a trust fund. You know what I mean? That's not doable. You have to passionately go all in, correct?

Pat the Roc:
Mm-hmm (affirmative), that's true.

Joel Epstein:
I'm assuming you did that, so tell us the story. You were five, bring it forward. Basketball, high school, college, what'd you do? Tell us the story.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. Growing up, I was actually a smaller kid, so-

Joel Epstein:
How tall are you now?

Pat the Roc:
Now I'm about 6'2".

Joel Epstein:
You're just tiny. That's a tiny guy, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, I'm about 6'2", but back then, I was always the smallest person on my team. I can remember playing youth basketball. My mom would have to put safety pins in my jersey, my shorts just to hold them up. Sometimes she would have to sew my shorts to make them smaller so they could fit. But I always had the biggest heart, and doing what I do now, looking at kids coming up, a lot of them get discouraged early and I try to tell them my story because everybody isn't going to be Lebron James right away. You have to be patient. You have to realize that it's a journey that you're going on.

Pat the Roc:
For me, it was definitely a journey. Like I said, I was the smallest person on my team in high school. I never started a game of basketball. I was the 12th man on the bench. Not necessarily because of my skill, but because of my size. I was small and-

Joel Epstein:
When did you grow?

Pat the Roc:
I grew-

Joel Epstein:
Were you, like, 5'8" in high school, then you grew later?

Pat the Roc:
I grew after college.

Joel Epstein:
Wow.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. So when I was about 21, I hit a crazy growth spurt.

Joel Epstein:
You had, like, a five inch ... bam.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. As a senior in high school, I might have been about maybe 5'7", 5'8", and then-

Joel Epstein:
I bet you were quick, though.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, I was pretty quick. Yeah, yeah, I was quick. And like I said, I just loved the game of basketball and I was patient and continued to work on my craft. I think anybody who's trying to achieve something, that's the type of mindset you should have.

Joel Epstein:
But were you able to get drafted ... Not drafted. Were you able to get a scholarship for college, or did you go walk on, or what'd you do?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, so I ended up going to the University of Cincinnati.

Joel Epstein:
Basketball powerhouse.

Pat the Roc:
At the time, they were number two in the nation.

Joel Epstein:
Nice.

Pat the Roc:
I actually got accepted there through my academics. I was supposed to go to Coppin State, a local school, and at the last minute, I got accepted to Cincinnati and I said, "Oh, I got to go there because I'm going to walk on and tryout." And people were looking at me like I was crazy, like, "No, you're not going to make that team."

Joel Epstein:
You still hadn't grown. You were still 5'8", right?

Pat the Roc:
I still was small. I still was small. And actually, how I got accepted into that school was not even just because of my academics. I actually wrote a song. I used to rap. I wrote a song and later on I found out from the admissions office that that's the reason that they let me into the school.

Joel Epstein:
Wait. Did you send a video?

Pat the Roc:
I wrote a song, yeah. I put it on a CD and it was about why they should let me into their school.

Joel Epstein:
That's awesome.

Pat the Roc:
And later on when I was signing up for my classes, the advisor told me, "That's the reason we let you in."

Joel Epstein:
That's great. That's great.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. That's a true story.

Joel Epstein:
I should have made you bring that song.

Pat the Roc:
I know.

Joel Epstein:
I'll make you bring it next time. So you show up at Cincinnati and you walk on?

Pat the Roc:
What I did was I knew they weren't going to pick any players up, because they already had one of the top teams in the nation. So I started bringing my basketball around campus everywhere, and instead-

Joel Epstein:
Pat the Roc showed up, huh?

Pat the Roc:
Instead of getting a orange basketball like everybody else, I had a red, white, and blue basketball. That's why my logo today is red, white, and blue, because I used to walk around campus with a red, white, and blue ball and I figured that would get the attention of Bob Huggins, who was the coach. "Who's this kid with the red, white, and blue?" So every day I had the ball, I was in the gym, I was walking around campus, and before you know it, people started recognizing, like, "This guy is weird. Why does he always have a ball?" In class, in the library, in a party, so that was kind of my thing.

Pat the Roc:
I actually ended up getting on the practice squad. They said, "We're not going to pick anybody up on the team, but we're going to keep five guys and let them practice." And from there, that's when I started to develop and really grow as a basketball player and my work ethic really improved as well.

Joel Epstein:
So what happened? Do you make it? Where does the story go from there?

Pat the Roc:
So from there, what happened is I stayed at Cincinnati for two years. My second year, I left. And also, another reason why that ball was red, white, and blue was because I wanted to be a Harlem Globetrotter one day, because I was pretty good at dribbling. That was one of my goals.

Joel Epstein:
Now, did you grow up ... I know you're a little bit younger than me, but did you grow up ... I have fond memories of going to see the Harlem Globetrotters at the Capital Centre, you know what I mean?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. I never got to see them play. But when I was in, like, the seventh grade, my mom got me a videotape, so that's how I knew about them. That's when I started really working on my dribbling and doing fancy things. I said, "One day, I want to play for them and then maybe make it to the NBA." That was on my checklist. And so when I was 19, I-

Joel Epstein:
How old were you when you put that on your checklist?

Pat the Roc:
To be a Globetrotter?

Joel Epstein:
Yeah.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, about seventh grade. Then I-

Joel Epstein:
You guys hear that? Seventh grade.

Pat the Roc:
Seventh grade.

Joel Epstein:
Keep going.

Pat the Roc:
Then when I was 19, I dropped out of college and came back to Maryland and I didn't know what I was going to do. Then I got a phone call from the Globetrotters.

Joel Epstein:
Wow.

Pat the Roc:
So when I was 19, I was the youngest person to ever play for them.

Joel Epstein:
That's incredible. I mean, so many layered messages right now, just if you're listening or you're watching. This should be inspirational for everybody because what Pat's talking about applies to ... It doesn't matter what you do. Whether you sell pencils, it doesn't matter what you do. If you dream big and you work hard and you stand out ...

Pat the Roc:
That's right.

Joel Epstein:
The basketball thing is genius. But that's marketing, that's PR, that's standing out, that's a logo. You were just a living logo, basically. And you work hard, you get to get what you want, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yep.

Joel Epstein:
So the Globetrotters call you and what happens from there?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, so they called me and they said, "Hey, we saw some video on you. We're going to invite you to training camp."

Joel Epstein:
Is this Cincinnati video? Where'd they get it from? Do you know?

Pat the Roc:
No. I had a videotape of me dribbling that they saw.

Joel Epstein:
Just floating out there?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, they saw it. YouTube wasn't out back then.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, I know, I know, I know.

Pat the Roc:
So, it was actually-

Joel Epstein:
That's why I'm asking, how did they get it?

Pat the Roc:
I sent them a videotape.

Joel Epstein:
Oh, okay.

Pat the Roc:
Because I knew ... At Cincinnati, I was like, "Okay, this is my second year. They're not going to pick me up. Let me just start my professional career." And so-

Joel Epstein:
Now, had you played anywhere high profile? I know last weekend you were at Rucker playing and whatever. Had you played anywhere where there was chatter? Meaning, I've seen you dribble before, so there would be chatter. You know, where there was just chatter so they put two and two together, like, "Oh, I've heard that guy's name and there's a tape sitting here." Were you already doing all that stuff?

Pat the Roc:
I think in today's era it would have been easier with Instagram and Facebook, but back then there was none of that so I had to put it in the mail and then hope they see it. So when they saw it, they invited me out. They said, "We're going to give you a shot." I didn't realize ... I thought it was just, "Oh, they're going to be doing some tricks, spinning the ball." But actually, at the time, it was like a real NBA training camp because they had two teams. They had a team that played against the college teams. I went out there and I had two NBA guys ... Cedric Ceballos and Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf were two NBA legends. They were actually trying out for the Globetrotters at the same time, so I was like, "Oh man, this is a-"

Joel Epstein:
The same team?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. "This is a real ..." I thought I was going to be spinning the ball, something easy, but it was an intense training camp, sprints, making shots. It was a big deal. So at 19, for me ... most of the other guys were 25, 26-

Joel Epstein:
Were the old guys still around? I mean, was Curly Neal-

Pat the Roc:
Old guys were coaching, yeah.

Joel Epstein:
Were they still around?

Pat the Roc:
They were the coaches and they were the guys picking the teams. It was a a good experience. It was like a, "Welcome to the real world," experience for me.

Joel Epstein:
Which you hadn't had before.

Pat the Roc:
Never had, yeah.

Joel Epstein:
Even at Cincinnati, which was ... what'd you say, number two. I mean, this is big time basketball. This was a whole nother level.

Pat the Roc:
A whole nother level, yeah.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, yeah. So what happened from there?

Pat the Roc:
From there, I didn't stay with them too long. I came back home, kept working, and I was just blessed to fall into this era of what they call streetball. ESPN picked up this TV show called Streetball. It was basically a reality show that traveled from city to city picking the best basketball players that weren't in the NBA or that were just off the street that were just very talented at dunking, dribbling, scoring. They had this show and I said, "Hey man, maybe this is something I could do. This could be another opportunity to get closer to the NBA."

Pat the Roc:
And so what happened was, they were in town and I got to the game late. The game was over, so I wasn't able to try out to try to get on the team. And so what happened was, at the end of the game, everybody was on the floor, they were signing autographs and kids were shooting around, and one of the balls rolled over to me while they were shooting around. I picked the ball up-

Joel Epstein:
Game on, yeah.

Pat the Roc:
I just kicked it over my head, threw the ball, it went off of my foot, I kicked it in the air, and one of the guys on the teams saw it. He said, "Hey, do that again." And I did it again, and then he showed the whole team. Then he was like, "Hey man, can we get your number? We're going to call you. We'd like to bring you out." And so the next week, they called me and they said, "Hey, we got a game in Tennessee we want you to play in, but you have to find your own ride there." I was like, "Okay, well, how am I going to get there?" Come to find out, the game was at the same college that my brother was attending at that time. So it just kind of happened at the right time. He came and picked me up, and the rest was history. I ended up being one of the main characters on that TV show. It ran on ESPN about three years, and that's how it really took off from there.

Joel Epstein:
So those of you that don't know ... those of you that are watching that don't know, you got to watch. I don't know what the best way to look for it is, but it's this ... Look, I'll be honest. I'm a football guy. I coach football, not basketball, but I understand basketball. How would you describe it? I know you kick it over your head then off the backboard. It's a crazy move. Describe it so people know what they're talking about. Because they're hearing you go you kicked the ball over your head. They're like, "What does that even mean?" I know because I've seen you, what you're talking about. Explain it.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, so-

Joel Epstein:
It's your signature move.

Pat the Roc:
When I was a kid, I was dribbling the basketball one day and it hit my foot and I said, "Maybe that could be a move or maybe that could be a pass." I remember I told my friend. He said, "Don't do that, man. That's illegal. You can't kick the ball in basketball. That's kickball. The referee's going to call it, Coach is going to send you out." I kept practicing that move. It took me about 10 years to master it, and then one day I finally did it in a game. I kicked the ball off the glass to one of my teammates and he dunked it. Luckily, somebody in the crowd was videotaping it and the videotape circulated and it got me on a video game, NBA 2K, all because of that move.

Joel Epstein:
Wow. Wow. That's great. Those of you that haven't seen it, you got to ... What's the best way to find it? I'll give you all the tags at the end, but Pat's got two pretty robust Instagram. He's got his Academy, which is where he teaches and works with all the kids and college players and anybody that wants to come in there. But then you just have it, it's just Pat the Roc. P-A-T T-H-E R-O-C. There's no K on that, by the way. R-O-C. I think it's on there, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
Did you just do it in Venice Beach or something?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
Did I just see you somewhere?

Pat the Roc:
Yep.

Joel Epstein:
Because I was watching it. I was like, "Oh man, this is great. This is hilarious." Yeah, okay. On a street court on the beach, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yep.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, okay. I just saw that. All right. So the ESPN thing obviously led to ... So how does that work, the video game thing? What, do they put a bazillion sensors on you and just you become a character?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. I first started doing video games ... it was 2007. It was NBA 2K8. And what it is is they bring you in and then you put on this suit, and it basically tracks all of your movements. So when kids are playing the game and they see Lebron or Kobe do a crossover, that's really me. They think that it's them, but I basically impersonate their moves, and then I add a couple of my own [crosstalk 00:19:40]

Joel Epstein:
You're like this stunt player with your ...

Pat the Roc:
Exactly, exactly.

Joel Epstein:
That's wild. So when they're seeing it in that ... Have you done any later versions, too?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah I did it from NBA 2K all the way to NBA 2K19, and then this year I just switched to NBA Live, which is their competitor. So I'll be on NBA Live 2020.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, my fourth grader is all about NBA Live. He's like, "Dad, can I use the iPad?" I'm like, "For what? Something interesting? No, NBA Live." That's what he's on all day every day. That's a good ... So you're doing that this year?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
So you did 2019. So that's interesting again, too. If you play NBA ... What's that one called?

Pat the Roc:
NBA 2K.

Joel Epstein:
If you play NBA 2K, you're really watching him, so I know you didn't know that. Sorry to spoil the party for you, but you're really watching this guy, not Lebron. Anyway, so tell me about ... Listen, I know that you are a passionate guy. People talk about success all the time, and I always ... One of my favorite words is the P word, passion. A lot of people take the word passion and they automatically think making out with somebody or being passionate in a relationship or whatever. I'm talking about the P word being passionate about what you do, because if you're passionate about what you do, I find passionate people are always successful. I'm not even talking about how much money they make. They are always successful at what they do. People always look over and go, "See that guy over there? Send your kid to him if you want your kid to learn this." Because you're passionate about something.

Joel Epstein:
The whole story you just told is a passion story. It started at the age of five, getting schooled by your mom, which is hilarious by the way. But started there, not to mention being competitive and driven, but passion. So when people talk a little bit about just hard work, you can apply it to little kids. I love how the people that work for you in the Academy, which is ... I know you know it's very hard to find good people, right? You really have to keep an eye on them. You get a bad egg in there, it's bad. You got little kids.

Joel Epstein:
The message of, "It's going to be all right, just keep going. Just keep going. Just shoot it again." And just as a problem for me or whatever, but my little guy, who can be not aggressive and pick up his dribble missed a whole bunch of shots in a row and then made a layup. As soon as he did it, a couple of your guys were like, "Yeah." But they weren't saying, "Yeah," because he made the layup. They were saying, "Yeah," because he kept shooting. And that's what I explained to him later. He didn't get that. I'm like, "You're missing the point. They don't care that the ball went in. What they care about is you kept doing it." So there's a lot of motivated people that watch this podcast, listen to this podcast, and I find a lot of times when I'm talking to them, it comes back to ... I'm like, "Well, why didn't you keep doing that? Why'd you stop doing that?" They don't get immediate results and they just stop. I know your tagline is, "Anything is possible," right?

Pat the Roc:
Yes, it is.

Joel Epstein:
And I firmly believe that. I don't care what color you are, whether you're fat, skinny, tall, blue, green. It doesn't matter. If you want to do it, you can do it, right? So share some of that with your own personal story, what you've seen. I know you've had some serious players come through your ... Now you're an old man, of course, but ... No, no. You've had some serious players, NCAA, D1, people come through. Pros. I know you've worked with pros. I mean, what kind of work ethic do they have to get to that? How zeroed in on the goal do they have to be?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. As far as what you said, piggybacking off what you said, being passionate. One of the number one questions I had when I was on my quest when I was a young basketball player was, "How many hours a day should I be working?" And how I figured out what to do was, I asked somebody, "How many hours are there in a real job?" He says, "A 9:00 to 5:00, eight hours." So I'll never forget, one summer I started getting to the park at 6:00 AM and I would stay until 9:00, take a break, come back at lunch, 12:00 to 2:00, come back at night and play pickup from 5:00 to 8:00.

Joel Epstein:
You got your eight hours.

Pat the Roc:
Eight hours. And that was the mindset that I had to establish. And working with a lot of elite players nowadays, the ones that I've seen that are really successful ... For instance, one of the best women's basketball players, Skylar Diggins. Started working with her when she was about 19, 20 years old and all the way up to when she was in the WNBA. When I work with most people, if we're shooting jump shots in one spot and the goal is to make 20 shots, the difference between her and other player is she wants to make 20 in a row.

Joel Epstein:
Not just 20.

Pat the Roc:
Not just 20. So okay, we got to shoot in five different spots. Okay, if I miss, I got to start all the way back over. So most people would be like, "Okay, I'll just make 20. If I miss, I'll just keep going." No. It's got to be 20 in a row. Another player, Quinn Cook, just won the championship with the Golden State Warriors. It took him about six, seven years to get into the NBA. He was undrafted, was in the D-League, and I've been working with him since he was about 16 years old. He worked his way all the way from not being in the NBA to starting in the NBA Finals.

Joel Epstein:
I want to hop in. I want you to keep going, but six to seven years. Six to seven years to get into the NBA. Not to be on a championship team, to get there.

Pat the Roc:
To get to that point.

Joel Epstein:
To get there. And so, those of you out there that are all about these quick results, like, "Why isn't that happening for me? I'm not going to do that again." I love when people call me like, "Hey, Joe. I got this really cool idea. I'm going to do X, Y, Z." I'm like, "Okay, cool." And they do it, and then two weeks later I'm like, "How did X, Y, Z work out for you? What happened?" "Yeah, it didn't work." I'm like, "So you didn't do it again?" They'll be like, "Yeah, well it didn't work so I didn't do it again," and I'm like, "What? What do you mean? It's never going to work. What are you talking about? You got to do it, like, a thousand times and then it's going to work." And they're like, "Yeah, no, no, no, no. That's not a good idea." And I'm like, "Okay, we need to talk because you got a problem."

Pat the Roc:
That's true.

Joel Epstein:
Because nothing works like that ever in life. Ever. And if you know what you want ... I mean, those of you out there that are doing loans and you're doing five and you want to do 15, you got to do certain things to make that happen. I can tell you that it's not going to happen because you did something for one second. Same thing if you're selling houses. Sell five houses a year and you want to sell 25 houses a year. That's not going to happen because you got some little cool technique or something that's going to get you there. The only thing that's going to get you there is hard work. Literally hard work all day every day.

Joel Epstein:
And as Pat said ... Pat, it's interesting. I don't know how many of the podcasts you've seen or whatever, how many are interesting to you, but there's a guy who did one of the first podcasts, and he's a pretty famous ... as mortgage people go, he's a pretty famous mortgage guy in California. His name is Brian Minkow, he's a great guy. I watched him in front of a group once ... and you'll actually like this. You should swipe and adapt this. You should say this, because it's what you just said. He's in front of the group and he's sitting there, and he's the number one at the time ... or number two ... mortgage person in the country, which is a big deal, like out of 20,000 people. Big deal. He's on the NBA championship team of mortgage, okay?

Pat the Roc:
Exactly. Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
And he's the MVP, basically. And some were like, "Brian, what's your secret?" And he's like, "Well, the first thing I do is I just work eight hours every day." And people are like, "What?" He's like, "Yeah, I work eight hours." And everyone's like, "What?" And he's like, "No, no, no. I work all eight hours in a row." Think about that for a minute. Have you ever actually worked for eight hours? You work for 10 minutes, you get a donut. Then you have a cup of coffee. Then you do this. Then you leave at 5:00 and you go, "I've been there for eight hours." You weren't working for eight hours.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, exactly. Work ethic.

Joel Epstein:
And everyone's like, "Wait a minute." I didn't realize ... It's funny that you said that, because I've never heard you say that before. But it just struck me as, wow. He's like, "Yeah man. All I do is work eight hours."

Pat the Roc:
That's true.

Joel Epstein:
Because you know what? Nobody works eight hours.

Pat the Roc:
Exactly.

Joel Epstein:
They say they're there, but they're not working. It's funny, because I watch what you do in the Academy. It's so interesting. I mean, those guys are ... they're working. When they're working, they're working. I mean, they get two minutes to get some water ...

Pat the Roc:
Yep. That's it.

Joel Epstein:
... but that's about it. So talk to me about stuff you've done with kids. A lot of people that are watching this are always thinking about giving back to the community and being passionate about giving back to the community. I always think one of the best ways to give back is to do stuff with kids. One of my favorite things when I was coaching peewee football was to take the kids who didn't have a lot of stuff ... take them to Football America in Jessup. My wife would be like, "Why is there a $1600 charge on our credit card?" I'm like, "Because I just bought six kids helmets, cleats," you know what I mean, because they just didn't have it. And they were so appreciative and they loved it and whatever, but I know you do a lot of that kind of stuff. A lot of people watching this, they want to give back, they don't know what to do, they don't know how to do it, they don't know how to be charitable like that. Talk about that, because I know that's something you're passionate about as well.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. Giving back, that's key. For me, the reason I put my career on hold was to help other people. I feel like it'd be selfish for me to just focus on myself trying to make it to the NBA. But when I started the Academy, I realized I could help so many other people. So within five years, we had over 15,000 kids come through our program.

Joel Epstein:
That's huge.

Pat the Roc:
We started with one kid and my first program was actually in a small classroom, when I first started, and we had about five kids.

Joel Epstein:
No hoops.

Pat the Roc:
No hoops.

Joel Epstein:
Just dribbling, right?

Pat the Roc:
Just a boombox and some basketballs.

Joel Epstein:
A boombox.

Pat the Roc:
A boombox and some basketballs.

Joel Epstein:
Those of you young people, that's a big thing with speakers. Just letting you know. [inaudible 00:30:18] cassette tape ...

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, no iPod.

Joel Epstein:
... you might not know what that is.

Pat the Roc:
Just a boombox.

Joel Epstein:
That's exactly right. Pat's showing his age now, he said boombox.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. And from there, now we have one of the top facilities on the East Coast for basketball training. So it takes time. It took us 10, 15 years to get to that point. But being able to give back ... just going back to what you said. In my younger years when I used to travel a lot, one of the places we started a program was in West Africa.

Joel Epstein:
Interesting.

Pat the Roc:
Basketball was pretty foreign there because soccer was the major sport, so in 2005 I went there and introduced the game of basketball to pretty much the whole country. We went over there and we did exhibitions and camps and clinics, and the kids, they just loved it. I would go back every couple of months just to check on the kids and their growth, and that was ... After doing that, coming back to the States, it was like, yeah, you always got to give back and do something to pay it forward. It's not just about the game of basketball, but it's about changing somebody's life with a simple handshake or high five or spinning the ball on their finger.

Joel Epstein:
But there's so many awesome messages that come from basketball. In life or with my audience or whatever, they watch some top producer and they're like, "Oh, that guy just did this, this, and this," or, in basketball, "That guy's free throw percentage is just some insane number," like a Steph Curry stupid number, off the charts number. And people, I think, naturally tend to think, "Oh man, he's just really good. He's just really good." And I'm always like, "No. You don't understand. He's taken nine zillion free throws. He was probably shooting free throws at 2:00 in the morning somewhere into a chain, you know what I mean, or a rim with no net." So whatever, he's thrown up a lot of balls.

Joel Epstein:
People will say that to me all the time. I'll be coaching or doing something and they'll be like, "Yeah, well that's easy for you to do." And I'm like, "Yeah, well I've said it 10,000 times. Of course it is. I'm not any smarter than you. I'm not any better than you. I've just done it more than you and I practiced doing it." And those messages go into business in a huge way. But in the society we're in right now where everything is so fast ... You're going to love this. Two little boys, right?

Pat the Roc:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Joel Epstein:
How old are they?

Pat the Roc:
Two and three.

Joel Epstein:
Two and three. I know this because Pat was on daddy duty and I saw him with both of them while he was trying to work at the same time. When I learned how to drive, you went to 7-Eleven and you got a ADC map book and you took that map book and you figured out where you were going. Now these jokers ... my kids can't get to 7-Eleven without nav. They're navving a mile because they can. They don't have to work. So things move so fast that the things that I worked really hard at and that you worked hard at ... these kids don't have to work. It makes it, I think, easier for people that work hard to dominate ... you all should hear that. If you're willing to go all in and work, you will dominate, period, end of discussion, you will dominate.

Joel Epstein:
But it's a challenge because everything is so fast, everybody wants everything so fast. I love with golf and you see someone hit this stupid shot out of a sand ... And you're like, "You know, literally, he probably stood there and hit that shot ..."

Pat the Roc:
Over and over.

Joel Epstein:
"... 5,000 times with a bucket." Literally ...

Pat the Roc:
That's true, yeah.

Joel Epstein:
But the people watching are like, "No, no, no. He's just really good." And I find it's harder to overcome that today than it was 20 years ago because of how fast everything is going. What type of message would you give to my audience, which is there's lots of people watching this, as far as getting what you want?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah. I think you have to go out and get it. You can't wait for it to come to you. Be proactive. My philosophy with basketball training ... it's funny, what you just said, how it's different from back in the day to nowadays. I bring in a lot of old coaches, guys from way back in the day, and the kids look at them like they're foreign because they don't understand how hard you have to work. We didn't have the certain weight machines that they have nowadays. We had to actually run the hills and different things like that. So I think having that drive and that dedication with anything that you want to do ... not just basketball. One of my favorite quotes is, "Your work ethic has to be bigger than your dreams." So if you have big dreams, your work ethic has to be that much crazier. So-

Joel Epstein:
So hold on one second. Having the big dream you got to have, but you can't let your work ethic be smaller than the dream.

Pat the Roc:
Exactly.

Joel Epstein:
I love that. So if the dream is Harlem Globetrotters ... that's a big dream, a very big dream for someone playing basketball. Or even to play D3 basketball is a big dream for anyone. You got to work harder than the dream. So if you want to sell a lot of houses, if you want to do a lot of loans or whatever and that's your dream, you have to understand the work that you have to do to get there.

Joel Epstein:
It's funny. This morning, I was talking to one of my clients ... actually, right before you came in he called me, and we ... Five years ago, I planned it out because ... I don't want to say my age, Pat. I don't want to say how old I am. I'm 32, by the way. I've been doing this for a little bit. I literally showed him. I'm like, "If you do this, this, this, and this, here's how it's going to look, and here's what it will look like in September or August or whatever of 2019." It's August 2019 right now, people. These things get released later sometimes. And he just called me and he's like, "Yo, I have my notes from November of 2014."

Pat the Roc:
Wow.

Joel Epstein:
And I was like, "Yeah?" He goes, "We're exactly on. I'm actually two units higher." He goes, "I didn't believe it at the time." I was like, "That is so cool." And he was telling me, "Thank you." I'm like, "No, no, no, no, no. You did all the work." I'm like, "I'll take 1% credit. Fine."

Pat the Roc:
That's amazing.

Joel Epstein:
"You take 99. You did that. You made that happen." But he did the work, you know what I mean, to make that happen. And it's cool. It's interesting. I just thought of that while you were saying that. He literally called me while I was ... I'm like, "Dude, I got to go. I got Pat the Roc coming in. I got to go."

Joel Epstein:
So did you write that down? Did you actually write down, "I want to be in the Harlem Globetrotters"? Did you take a pen or a pencil and write that down, or was that just stuck in your head?

Pat the Roc:
I did. And I'll tell you what helped me get to that point. I don't want to miss this part. Because I was taking that basketball everywhere, I'll never forget one day I bumped into this old guy and he saw me dribbling and he said, "Hey man, what are you doing with that ball?" I said, "This is my dream, this is my goal, this is what I want to achieve." He said, "Man, I want you to remember something." I said, "Okay." He said, "Three simple letters." So I automatically assumed he was talking about NBA. But the letters were AIP. I said, "What's that stand for?" He said, "Anything is possible." And for some reason, out of all the messages I ever got in my life, that really stuck with me. And so when I went home that night, I wrote AIP on my basketball so every time I-

Joel Epstein:
You wrote it right on the ball.

Pat the Roc:
I wrote it on the ball. And so every time I dribbled, every time I shot. I wrote it on my shoe, and every time I looked down, whatever, I always saw that message. 10 years later, I started to actually share the message with other people, but nobody else really knew what it meant. Now it definitely saved my life, for sure.

Joel Epstein:
I mean, people ... I think society in general, the big word people throw around now is grit. It's really a great word. It's a very descriptive word of what you have to have. I mean, you have grit. Clearly you have grit. You have to have grit. Grit goes right along with passion to drive you where you're going. I mean, to go through the wall. There's the wall, go through it. "Well, I can't. It's cinder block." Figure it out. "I don't want to. It's going to hurt." There's one guy that's on the other side of the wall. There's crumbled stuff everywhere. He's like, "Yeah, I got through that wall. Yeah, you said it was possible. I did it. It took me two days, but I'm on the other side of the wall."

Pat the Roc:
That's it.

Joel Epstein:
"I'm the only one over there." And it's a big, big, big message. You're cool, you have a cool story, especially ... I didn't know about the height thing, because that is a big thing. And it's true, the two kids standing next to each other with the same skill level and one of them is 5'8" and one of them is 6 feet tall. The six-foot guy is going on the court. I mean, right?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah.

Joel Epstein:
It is what it is if it's all equal.

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, that's true.

Joel Epstein:
And you can't control ... I mean, you could wear lifts, but you can't control your height.

Pat the Roc:
Exactly.

Joel Epstein:
You control everything else though, which is what you've done. So I just want to encourage you. Definitely go check out ... Pat obviously has a website, which is pattheroc.com. But his Instagram is just @pattheroc, right?

Pat the Roc:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Joel Epstein:
P-A-T-T-H-E-R-O-C. And I know there's another one for the Academy as well.

Pat the Roc:
@therocskillsacademy.

Joel Epstein:
Yeah, which I heavily recommend, by the way. Those of you that know me know I don't really do paid advertising on this podcast yet. And so I only recommend stuff that I've either personally used or I truly, passionately recommend and Pat and his crew definitely knows how to handle youngsters. By the way, how little are the littlest ones in there?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, we start at-

Joel Epstein:
Can you be in kindergarten?

Pat the Roc:
No, we start at age one. We have a toddler class.

Joel Epstein:
You do?

Pat the Roc:
That's actually our most popular class.

Joel Epstein:
A one year old?

Pat the Roc:
Yes.

Joel Epstein:
What are they doing?

Pat the Roc:
If they can walk, we can teach them how to play.

Joel Epstein:
That's so ...

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, we have the little Fisher Price hoops and Baby Shark.

Joel Epstein:
I haven't seen that. You put all that away, right, whenever I'm there?

Pat the Roc:
Yeah, yeah. We bring that out, we play Baby Shark, they shoot, and they love it, man. It's fun. It's a lot of fun.

Joel Epstein:
That's awesome. That's awesome. Yeah, that's incredible. All right. Well Pat, thank you so much for coming on today. I really appreciate it.

Pat the Roc:
Thanks for having me.

Joel Epstein:
I think the message is just a strong message for everyone. And obviously, we don't have a lot of time. I could probably talk to Pat for eight hours and there'd be tons of cool stuff, so go check him out. You can see all the stuff in his bio. But again, this is going to wrap up another edition of The bigJOEL Show. Hopefully you like it. If you do, please go like us on any major platform. You can find us just about anywhere where you can consume a podcast, so thank you very much and we'll see you next time. Bye bye.

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