A snap decision to shave off his big beard before braving the heat of soccer in nearly equatorial Brazil.
A huge desire to fire up soccer fans in the stands.
And thus, Mike D’Amico becomes our rough riding, jungle hunting President Teddy Roosevelt.
"I'm going to be in the jungle, I have this beard I can shave into a moustache. And, if there's ever a president that you would want leading your team, leading your country into battle, in the middle of the jungle, it's Teddy Roosevelt."
And the next thing you know, US scores an amazing second goal against Portugal, and Mike D’Amico’s screaming face is captured, and just like that he becomes the face of rough-riding USA soccer.
"That's me at my most excited."
America’s 26th President Teddy Roosevelt has become the world’s beloved Theodore Goalsevelt.
He’s a native of Geneva, New York, who works at the big Calvary ad house in Chicago, making Teddy-like beer commercials that you’ve also probably seen before.
But Mike credits his stint at Virginia Commonwealth University, at the Brandcenter, for inspiring him and building lifelong friendships.
"I was at VCU from 2005 to 2007. It's such an intense program. I met probably the best friends that I will have - friends for life - because of the bonds you make are do strong because you're all dealing with this sort of looming pressure all the times."
Mike says he became Teddy to help whip up passion in the stands. But he's practically jumping for joy that Teddy Goalsevelt may ever-so-slightly raise the temperature of soccer fever in the US.
"It's dawned on me how serendipitous and coincidental this has been almost every step of the way."
Could he be our good luck charm? He’ll be there when USA takes on Germany Thursday.
Already there’s an internet drive to keep lucky Teddy in country as long as US is on the hunt.
There’s an ad campaign VCU can be proud of.