Written by Petty Officer 2nd Class Lauren Laughlin
Football, America’s pastime conjures up thoughts of rivalries, college, good food, better friends, and of course Super Bowl. We cry when our team is defeated and rejoice as if each win is our own. Some people dream of being the star player and some dream of being the star player’s coach. Petty Officer 3rd Class Dominique Rogers, a yeoman at the Coast Guard Academy, is living that dream right now coaching the Philadelphia Eagles after being awarded the Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship.
The NFL Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship was developed 30 years ago to give minority coaches an opportunity to work with NFL team coaches during training camps and offseason workout programs.
The fellowship gives Rogers the opportunity to further develop leadership and communication skills that he uses in his daily routine with the Coast Guard.
The Academy athletics department has a paid coaching staff, but also opens the field up to Coast Guard members who show exceptional coaching skills, like Rogers, who has been a volunteer coach for two years.
“Dom had the unique ability to transfer his military leadership skills onto the football field last season as an assistant coach here at the Coast Guard Academy,” said Bill George, the Academy head football coach. “He developed a personal relationship with our football team by being a very demanding and enthusiastic coach. I am excited he has this opportunity with the Philadelphia Eagles and look forward to him helping on the field again this season.”
Although graduating with a social science degree and enlisting in the Coast Guard, Rogers heart has always been in football.
“I am blessed and beyond grateful to be able to participate in this prestigious fellowship,” said Rogers. “I’m looking forward to learning as much as I can about the game of football at the highest level, the NFL. I am going to represent my family, myself, and Coast Guard the best way possible.”
He played football and ran track at Arkansas Baptist College before transferring to Trinity International University where he was a defensive back earning all-conference and National Christian College and NAIA All-America honors during both his junior and senior years.
He participated in the Rookie Mini Camp with the Minnesota Vikings in 2013 as an undrafted free agent. Rogers reported to the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on July 22, 2017, where he has been working with the defensive coaches and with the defensive backs.
“He is loving it,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Chris Hermon, a coworker of Rogers at the Academy. “He might not have been an Eagles fan to begin, but he is now.”
Rogers stayed with the Eagles throughout the training season and returned to the Academy following the Eagles first preseason game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.