VIDEO: Rob Mendez, football coach without arms or legs, inspires his team | SC Featured * 2024
VIDEO: Rob Mendez, football coach without arms or legs, inspires his team | SC Featured * 2024

Rob Mendez grew up a passionate sports fan

His first word as an infant was “ball.” However, Rob was born with no arms or legs — the result of an extraordinarily rare condition called tetra-amelia syndrome, with very few known cases globally. While Rob couldn’t physically play sports, he didn’t let that stop him from achieving his dream of becoming a high school football coach, author and speaker who now spends time inspiring students and professional athletes from the NFL and MLB.

A busy and accomplished motivational speaker, as well as a successful coach, Rob has been the subject of dozens of profiles in national media, as well as the ESPN documentary short feature, Who Says I Can’t? The film was nominated for a 2019 Emmy Award and was entered in the Tribeca Film Festival. Coach Rob has made appearances on Rachael Ray, NFL Network, ESPN and more.


Who says I can’t

Coach Rob Mendez is the Junior Varsity Coach at Prospect High School in Saratoga, California. In 2019, Mendez was awarded the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the ESPYS. Coach Rob Mendez has also used his story and passion to become a motivational speaker. He has traveled across the country, giving motivational speeches about perseverance and grit.

Rob Mendez sounds like any other football coach on any other field across America: passionate, authoritative, knowledgeable. But he’s unlike any other coach you know, in fact, he’s probably unlike any other person you know. He moves with the assistance of a custom-made, motorized wheelchair that he operates with his back and shoulders.


Many people look at Rob and see limitation

Rob sees opportunity: Opportunity to pursue his passion for football. Opportunity to change the way people perceive physical disability. Opportunity to serve as a role model for the hundreds of kids he’s coached over the years.

Told with both humor and frankness, Who Says I Can’t? Takes readers on Rob’s incredible journey, from his birth to loving parents who wanted to afford him every chance for happiness, to the emotional and physical hurdles he faced while seeking independence, to receiving the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the ESPY Awards in 2019.

Each day, Coach Rob rolls onto the field and shows his players that dreams are achievable when you show up, do the work, and believe in yourself.

Rob Mendez, football coach with Tetra-amelia syndrome * Todo lo relacionado