Oct. 1, 2004
#55 Zach Giles
Senior, 6-3, 285
Senior center Zach Giles is in his fourth season at Notre Dame. Currently listed as a backup to starting center John Sullivan, Giles has proven to give the Irish outstanding depth at center the past two seasons. As a junior, he played in six games, making a start versus Michigan State. Giles came to Notre Dame after a standout high school career at Marshfield High School in Marshfield, Mass. GameDay Magazine’s Bridget Viehmeyer gives Irish fans a chance to get to know Zach Giles.
Veihmeyer: What is your major and why your interest in that field?
Giles: My majors are sociology and computer applications. They’re interesting and I hope to get into Public Relations after college, so hopefully they will help out in that area.
Veihmeyer: What is your hardest class and why?
Giles: Statistics is my hardest class, because I’m not so good with numbers.
Veihmeyer: What is your favorite class and why?
Giles: I’m taking a Programming class right now which is interesting because we’re putting a website together piece by piece. Hopefully it will be pretty cool when it’s all done.
Veihmeyer: To date, what has been the highlight of your Notre Dame career?
Giles: In my freshman year when we opened against Michigan State right after 9/11. All the people in the stands were holding up the American flags. That was probably one of the coolest things I’ve seen so far.
Veihmeyer: Who were your sports idols as a kid and why?
Giles: Larry Bird, Drew Bledsoe and Michael Jordan. They’re dominant players and seem to do something phenomenal every game you watch.
Veihmeyer: As a football player is there anyone you’ve modeled your game after?
Giles: [Former Irish center] Jeff Faine. He’s a great player and all around tough guy. So I try my best to play like him.
Veihmeyer: Who has been your biggest non-sports role model and why?
Giles: My parents. They’ve been really supportive.
Veihmeyer: What is one thing in your life you can’t live without?
Giles: I can’t live without television- `cause then I couldn’t watch TV or play video games.
Veihmeyer: What is the best advice that you’ve ever been given and who gave it to you?
Giles: My dad always says that the only guarantee you have is that you’re gonna wake up with yourself the next day. So as long as you’re happy with yourself and everything you do, then you’re alright.
Veihmeyer: How do you think you’ve grown as a person since coming to Notre Dame?
Giles: I’ve definitely learned humility. I’ve learned how to be a supporting player. I think that’s the biggest thing, is learning to be humble and take criticism.
Veihmeyer: What is one thing about you that might surprise people?
Giles: I’m incredibly funny.
Veihmeyer: How and what do you do to balance your academic workload and football workload?
Giles: As soon as I get out of practice I take care of my school work. During the day I don’t really have time to do anything, but at night is when I get everything done.
Veihmeyer: What is your most embarrassing moment in sports?
Giles: During my sophomore year of high school, I blocked a punt and started returning it the wrong way.
Veihmeyer: What is your favorite movie?
Giles: My favorite movie is Top Gun. I used to watch it at least 3 or 4 times a day everyday for years growing up. I memorized the whole movie front to back.
Veihmeyer: What is the toughest place you’ve played as a college football player?
Giles: Michigan State, two years ago. It was really loud, and a pretty wild place.
Veihmeyer: What CD do you have in your collection that would surprise people?
Giles: I don’t have a specific CD, but I listen to a lot of classical music. It’s relaxing before you go to bed.
Veihmeyer: If you had the chance to play golf with anyone in history, who would be in your foursome and why?
Giles: George W. Bush, Elvis, and my dad. If you put those three guys together it’s bound to be a fun time. We’d go out there and try to get in a little trouble.
Veihmeyer: If you could be a cartoon character, who would you be and why?
Giles: Homer Simpson. I think he’s a riot.
Veihmeyer: Describe what it feels like on game day and playing in Notre Dame Stadium?
Giles: It’s intense. You don’t realize how little 80,000 people can look like when you’re in the middle of the field, but when you’re on the sidelines and they start chanting and it gets loud, like it did against Michigan, you realize how huge a crowd it is. I would love to someday be able to tailgate, though. I think the atmosphere outside would be one of the most impressive things to see.
Veihmeyer: What is your favorite thing about playing for Notre Dame?
Giles: Being able to say that I play for Notre Dame is probably one of the best things about it.