Senior Q & A: Tim Haehl

Tim Haehl is a history concentrator (Gil Talbot).
Tim Haehl is a history concentrator (Gil Talbot).

"Tim Haehl is and outstanding person and athlete, and I am betting on him to have a positive impact on our secondary in his senior season." – Tim Murphy, The Thomas Stephenson Family Head Coach for Harvard Football. 

Q: What is your concentration?
History, with a secondary field in government.

Q: What do you hope to do in life once football is finished?
When the final whistle blows against Yale, I would love to travel more. Around the U.S. but also in the world.

Q: Can you explain the nuances of your position and provide something for the casual fan to better understand what you're seeing on the field?
Everyone knows who the quarterback is, and how they throw to receivers. Defensive backs are the last line of defense and cover the wide receivers.

Q: What is your first memory of football?
Starting in third grade and wearing number 66. Not the typical number for a running back!

Q: What's your favorite Harvard team to watch as a fan? 
Without a doubt, squash. (Shout out D. Ryan)

Q: What are the hardest parts of being a student-athlete at Harvard?
Balancing athletics and academics is probably the typical answer, but I would say making sure to eat a complete diet every day could fall in there as well.

Q: What's the best part about a home football day?
Being able to play in one of the best settings in college football. Nothing quite like a beautiful fall day at Harvard Stadium!

Q: Who do you like lining up against in practice?
Semar Smith… we've had some big hits on the practice field that we probably should've saved for the games!

Q: Who has the best nickname on the team and why? 
Luke Hutton, Zach Miller, and Tanner Lee – these three are the "Knuckleheads."

Q: Do you have a nickname and how did it come about?
"Slim" – Not a clue how it came about, but the defensive backs started calling me Tim, then Slim Tim, and now it's just Slim!

Q: How has playing football at Harvard better prepared you for life? 
Early mornings! I'll (hopefully) never have to wake up earlier than when we wake up for spring practices ever again, but if I do, I'll be ready.

Q: What do you think of when you hear Harvard's mission statement, "Education Through Athletics?"
The field has proven to be an incredibly important space for learning in my life. Take mistakes and learn from them, then get better on the next play. It's a different kind of education, and in many ways, I feel the lessons learned are much more applicable to what I will go through in life as compared to the lessons from the classroom.

Q: When you leave Harvard, what do you want your legacy to be? 
I hope to be remembered as a player who always was able to smile even during the coldest and darkest of morning practices. The Harvard Football experience will go down as one of the best times of my life and there's a lot to be thankful for. I hope my teammates and coaches have been able to see the enjoyment I've gotten out of every second in this program.

Q: If you weren't playing football, you would be…
Traveling the world experiencing as many different cultures as humanly possible.

Q: What is your favorite memory on the football field? 
Every single home game. They are so incredibly fun especially when the stadium is packed. No place else like it!

Q: Where are your favorite places to eat in the square? 
Felipe's, Pinocchio's Pizza, Chipotle, Jefe's, Russell House.

Q: If you could have dinner with three people, dead or alive, who would they be?
Gandhi, Michael Jackson, Eric Prydz.

Q: Best football movie of all-time? Why?
ESPN's 30 for 30 on Miami – "The U." You can't watch it without wanting to get out on the field!

Q: If you could be anyone for a day, who would it be and why?
Justin Timberlake – what can't he do?

Q: If you could go back, what's one piece of advice you would give yourself as a freshman?
Explore Boston more during freshman year! There's a lot of fun to be had outside of the Harvard bubble.

Q: Who has the best dance moves on the team? The worst?
Adam/Wes, without a doubt, have the best moves. Stone has the worst by a long shot!

Q: Your favorite "Murph"-ism (saying or quote from Coach Murphy)?
Not sure if it counts, but everyone on the team knows Coach Murphy's watch is set 20 minutes ahead… this is what we call "Murphy Time." Don't be late!