Football kicker skilled in soccer, linguistics

Chronicle Staff

Soccer usually teaches its players how to run, kick and inspire worldwide frenzy, but for Zack Mirman ‘07 it has also led him to football and “Spangloportuginglish.”

Mirman is a member of the boys’ varsity soccer team and a club team, Galaxy Alliance. Halfway through last year’s season, the football kicking coach Freddie Arroyo approached soccer players to find a new kicker, and their coach recommended Mirman.

“They were using John Howe ‘07, who is a good kicker, but he is also the starting quarterback and gets the crap beat out of him on a constant basis,” Mirman said.

Howe was having trouble playing quarterback and kicking full time, so Mirman tried playing with the team and was soon accepted as the new kicker.

Mirman now attends all football practices and games as well as his previous club soccer commitments. He has spoken to some colleges about playing on their teams, but he is also considering contacting them for football.

“It’s a possibility that I could be recruited for football and not soccer, which is sad because I love soccer.” This summer, Mirman traveled to an international soccer tournament in Brazil.

“It was the best soccer I’ve ever played, and we got the best training possible,” he said.

Mirman and his team trained in the mornings and traveled to stadiums in nearby Brazilian towns to play afternoon games.

Mirman, who completed AP Spanish Language last year and created his own Directed Studies Spanish Film class this year, is also proud of the linguistic skills he picked up in Brazil.

Mirman said he bought a Portuguese phrase book before he went, but the immersion is what helped him learn the language quickly.

“It is similar to Spanish in grammar but really different in accent. It was a matter of listening to how people speak and to speak in Spanglish or Spangloportuginglish.”