Staff and the glory days: Daane Spielmaker


What high school did you attend and which sports did you play?

“I attended GR Catholic Central for high school and played football, basketball, and baseball all 4 years.”

How did you get started in these sports?

I have 4 brothers, 2 sisters and my dad always had us playing sports, hunting, and fishing. My two other brothers also played D-1 football and my sister played college basketball.”

Who was your biggest support system while playing?

“My Dad and Mom were all over the place watching sports all the time.”

How did you get started playing football at Notre Dame University?

I was recruited for football by most of the big-time schools. I had recruiting trips to Michigan, MSU, Colorado, Wisconsin, Air Force, and Notre Dame. I was a Quarterback in high school and I was recruited to play QB at all schools except Notre Dame. Notre Dame recruited me as an athlete, and in the end, I ended up playing safety.”

How did playing football in college help you?

Football at that level is very demanding and it teaches you mental toughness and time management for sure. Also that the team is the important part, not the individual.”

After college did you ever want to go professional? Why or why not?

I had an agent, but I was not good enough to play in the pros plus I had a bad leg injury and I was ready to move on from football.”

You roomed with Mr.Passinault in college, what is it like to go from roommates to coworkers?

Mr. Passinault and I played all 3 sports together for 4 years and then lived in the same dorm for 4 years, so we were good friends. After college, we didn’t live in the same city for about 20 years, so it has been fun working together a lot of good memories.”

How long did you coach football? What are the benefits from coaching football in your opinion?

“I coached football at the high school level for about 10 years total in Wisconsin and here at FHC. I also coached varsity girls softball at Catholic for 3 years and that was fun. I think football teaches young men and coaches the value of working together as a unit and learning the skills to work hard all the time because that is the toughest part of football. My college position coach used to tell us that’fatigue makes a coward out of the strongest man”.

What is your biggest athletic accomplishment?

“My biggest athletic accomplishment was my full-ride scholarship that paid for my college education and the fact that I earned my official monogram my junior and senior years as starting nickel back in the secondary. It was an absolute thrill to play in the biggest and best stadiums in the country over the course of my 4 years playing for the Irish. I am most proud that I graduated in 4 years four years Notre Dame with a business degree, that was not easy for me.”