The New England Patriots hosted a number of special guests during their offseason workout program this spring including the Vanderbilt coaching staff.
Vanderbilt head coach Derek Mason, who’s entering his fourth year with the Commodores, spoke to Patriots.com about what he learned from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick at minicamp.
“Bill Belichick’s one of the best in the business,” Mason said. “When I look at his record, his longevity, but just having 1-on-1s with Coach Belichick has really helped me understand the idea of what a head coach is, what a head coach does. I’m in my fourth year as a head coach. I have to continue to grow and learn, and every year gives you that opportunity. But ‘be resolute in what you believe, and understand exactly what your team is, and never compromise who you are.’”
The two-day stay was beneficial for the entire Vanderbilt coaching staff.
“It’s about growth,” Mason said. “This is an opportunity for us to make sure that we can learn, extend our opportunity to get better as a staff. Just to be around this (Patriots) staff, see the culture, what they are, stick to their beliefs, fundamental football — it’s been a growth opportunity for my staff. …
“It’s just been tremendous for us to be able to learn. OK, we’ve learned a lot both technically and from a schematic standpoint. So, I believe Vanderbilt got better in these two days we’ve been here.”
The Patriots also hosted the University of Florida coaching staff as well as former Oregon, Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly.
Thumbnail photo via Jim Brown/USA TODAY Sports Images