When it comes to the intersection of sports and technology, these founders are truly taking things beyond the status pro!
Created by dynamic duo, Andrew “Hawk” Hawkins and Troy Jones, the two took their love for the game of football and combined it with their desire to build a suite of training and gaming products.
Now, it is changing the way coaches, players and fans experience their favorite sport.
“Status Pro was birthed out of me and Hawks’ experiences as athletes,” shared Jones in an exclusive interview with AfroTech. “Originally we started off as a company focused on helping athletes get better through augmented virtual reality.”
From there, the company built a desktop application that would track data from players.
“Each player in NFL games wears two tracking chips, one that tracks their movement and one that creates XY grid coordinates that track speed position during every game,” continued Jones. “The data is then taken and used to create 3D simulations of what happened and [of] every single player during every NFL game.”
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The data from the simulation is then taken and placed into a VR headset and projected onto a big screen allowing the player to experience the play without physically being on the field amongst their teammates.
Hawkins and Jones’ experiences as players have been the catalyst for how the company uses technology to literally change the game.
“Our hope is for Status Pro to be one of the companies that set the stage for Black founders in tech and in gaming because there’s not a lot of us,” shared Hawkins. “Hopefully it will be one of those places where we’ve created opportunities and have shown the benefit of having that in the technology space.”
As fellow athletes, Hawkins and Jones bring a unique perspective to the immersion of technology and sports.
“We felt that our experience as athletes gave us a deeper meaning of how things could be applied in tech,” he continued. “You’ve seen technology help coaches, you’ve seen technology help teams and players, but as athletes, we know what would benefit us the most.”
Because of this, the pair has created something that will revolutionize the way that users view the sport.
“That’s what we’ve crafted the technology around and even in the gaming side as well, we’re putting things in there that we experience and something that we know that fans have yet to experience,” Hawkins said.
Thanks to Status Pro, fans can gain access to experiences that they’ve never had access to — access to experiences that continue to get better thanks to partnerships with NFL teams and the Baltimore Ravens’ very own Lamar Jackson.
Hawkins and Jones said they knew Jackson would be the perfect fit for the platform.
“When we first began discussing building a gaming product, Hawk and I were thinking about what athlete represents what we represent, and could truly serve as a human highlight reel,” said Jones. “A highlight reel that was like a video game. And there’s no other player in the league that encompasses that more than Lamar Jackson.”
The dynamic duo knew that Jackson, who was on the heels of an MVP year, would be approached by a lot of different companies. However, they knew in their hearts that their background coupled with what they were building would allow him to see the vision.
“We initially actually connected with his manager, Felicia Jones, who played a major role in the partnership, and allowed her to see the vision through the training product,” explained Jones. “We also allowed her to see a sample of what the gaming product would look like and from there she fell in love with it and eventually brought Lamar to the table.”
Jackson not only played the game and became a partner to Status Pro, but the quarterback became an investor in the business.
Click here for more on the Status Pro experience.