Experts don’t have a universal way to quantify the difference mental performance coaching can make on a sports organization, but Trevor Moawad, who assisted Nick Saban, Jimbo Fisher and Kirby Smart at Alabama, Florida State and Georgia over the past decade, believes the right mental performance coaching under optimal conditions can improve outputs “three to five percent” overall. He cited Notre Dame having at least one of those optimal conditions: the fact that Selking works virtually independent of the athletic department and reports directly to Kelly.

“That’s a winning formula right there,” Moawad said. “Give Brian Kelly credit for having somebody specific to the program.”

Moawad was not omnipresent at those other schools like Selking is around Notre Dame at practices and games, even sitting in on positional meetings. Moawad believes that presence adds to the value of Selking’s role, even if its execution doesn’t mirror his own time in the industry.

“You serve other people,” Moawad said. “So the best-case scenario in college is you can be seen as a functional part of the program.”


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