“You’ve got to use some of the things that we have at our disposal … and make a fuller life,” Crosby said. “Not just be a kicker all the time. I love what I do, and I want to do it for a long time. But there’s going to be a life after this, and I’ve got to make sure that I educate and nourish that progression as it comes.”
‘So many details’
Alexander reported to work early one weekday morning last winter because it was his turn in the rotation.
The Redskins were less than a month into their offseason, but already Alexander’s second job demanded his attention. In The Studio’s infancy, either he or Golston or their wives, Manjanique or Christal, respectively, was always on-site to deal with whatever twist that day presented.
Alexander sat at a desk in a windowless office across the hall from the main dance studio. It was strange to see him all corporate in a golf shirt and slacks. A supply list on the wall included tape, hanging file folders and tissues. He clicked away at a desktop computer
It was what Alexander wanted when the owner of Castlerock Pilates (pronounced pih-LAH-teez) moved and left the client base, including him, without its preferred workout facility.
Alexander and Golston by then considered Pilates an optimum training method. They also had resources to seize what they considered an opportunity to diversify their lives, establish roots in the community and, hopefully, run a profitable company.
Considering the financial flexibility they earned playing football — and the potential tax write-offs — their families decided to take over the business.
“It’s a safety net, versus where if The Studio was all I had, I don’t know if I could just throw $150,000 into it,” Alexander said.
That decision was easier than the work required to realize their vision. Alexander and Golston were equipped with knowledge from the NFL Business Management & Entrepreneurial Program they attended at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 2010, but this was real.
“I kept telling them: ‘You guys, when you open your own business, it’s so hard. It’s so much work and there are so many details,’” Christal Golston said, sharing her decade of experience owning her real estate company.
The husbands learned quickly; not that they shied from hard work. Golston, 29, was a sixth-round draft pick out of Georgia in 2006. Alexander, a 29-year-old Cal product, joined the Redskins that year as a member of the practice squad. Players with that pedigree don’t survive two head coaching changes over seven seasons without strong work ethics.
“When you own a business, you don’t have a day off,” Golston said. “You’re the janitor. You’re the accountant. You’re the receptionist, the mechanic. So just the approach if something has to get done, you have to do it. Just like in football. They don’t see you waking up at 5 a.m., going and running, the discipline it takes day in and day out.”
That commitment strengthens interpersonal bonds. It’s how Alexander and Golston became friends in the first place. Sessions on the field practicing defense or special teams nurtured that one afternoon at a time.