JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Joseph Hansen is in his first year as the strength and conditioning coach here at Bishop Snyder High School.
"God called me to be a coach," he said. "I wanted to shoot bad guys. I was a Marine and he had other plans for me. So, now I'm coaching. I serve my country better as a coach than a Marine."
Coach Hansen is an expert in his field. He has been training and conditioning athletes for 20 years.
Hansen is an Olympic-style weight lifter and he coached the only national champion in Jacksonville history: Mike Sohaw in 2009.
But Hansen said none of that compares to what he's doing now.
"We've got to build men and ladies. Sports don't build character. Sports justify rotten behavior and we've got to bring character back to athletics. It's killing our country."
Reporter: "Are you a tough coach? Are you hard on them?"
Hansen: "I expect an awful lot out of them. I push them to their God-given potential. I don't let them do anything less than their best. If it's good enough to get them to walk and chew gum, I'll let them walk and chew gum. If it's good enough to get them a scholarship international, then I'll do that as well."
Corey Salt, the center for the cardinals football team said Coach Hansen has had a profound impact on he and his classmates.
"Aside from strength, he's made me a better person. His focus on God and he finds it through lifting. Sometimes the references don't kick in but you'll get it a few days later," Salt said.
"He's just been teaching me how to overcome obstacles in life," said Matthew Tanner. "And if you really want to do something, go for it."
"What's the most rewarding part about this job? The privilege, this school, my parents from my club and this school place in allowing me to work and teach and coach their kids. When you watch them grow up, that's a humbling responsibility and a real privilege," Hansen said.
Coach Joseph Hansen is our "Hero Next Door."
First Coast News