Just for Kicks
Former Mason Soccer Player Pursues Two of His Passions: Soccer and Helping Kids
By Sarah McGurk
On November 11, 2000, former George Mason soccer player, Tamir Linhart, B.A. Communication '95, was inducted into the Greater Washington, D.C., Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. "It was an unforgettable night for me," says Linhart. "My whole family came from Israel, and many of my friends were there as well."
The induction can be added to the list of awards and recognitions he received while playing for Mason. Besides leading the nation in scoring in 1992, Linhart's other collegiate accolades include All American, All South Atlantic, Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year, Virginia Player of the Year, and Soccer America Most Valuable Player.
Linhart now runs his own business that allows him to pursue two of his passions: soccer and helping children. As the founder and owner of Tamir Linhart Soccer Training, Linhart and his staff train more than 3,000 players, ranging from preschoolers to college players.
What started as a private winter training session led to small group sessions, team sessions, and now a year-round facility with a variety of training programs, camps, lectures, and seminars. He is involved in a number of joint ventures with local organizations, such as the Jewish Community Centers in Maryland and Virginia and the Fairfax Police Youth Club. Tamir Linhart Soccer Training also serves as an official training camp for the D.C. United soccer team.
Linhart attributes his career inspiration to Gordon Bradley, former head coach of Mason's men's soccer team.
"Having Gordon Bradley as a mentor was a major factor in my career path," Linhart explains. "My desire to make a living working with soccer and kids--just as Gordon does--led me to my choice."
Despite his former professional status as a Washington Warthog and player for Hopel Tel-Aviv of the Israeli Premier League, Linhart admits that teaching skills and techniques to others has made him a better player.
"My experience at Mason influenced my career in many ways," he says. "As a college player, I was able to become part of the U.S. soccer community at a time when soccer was growing at a rapid pace. In addition, the classes I took at Mason gave me the knowledge and the tools I needed to become a businessman."
Linhart now plays in an over-30 league with friends just for fun, though he misses his days of playing competitively. "Soccer has been a major part of my life for more than 27 years," he admits. "I love the game, and I wanted to pass that love of the game to a younger generation."
For more information on Linhart's soccer program, please visit www.linhartsoccer.com.