SARASOTA -- The energy in his movement is apparent, and the passion in his voice cannot be ignored.
Paul Maechtle was born to coach football.
It's a reason his retirement after 33 years coaching at Southeast lasted barely past six months.
The hall of fame coach who won two state titles and coached a ton of highly touted Division I players at Southeast, is an assistant at Cardinal Mooney.
At a recent practice, he showed an abundance of excitement that you might not expect from a person who just finished three-plus decades of coaching football.
The players seem to want to share his excitement and are alert and attentive, hanging on his every word.
Maechtle says fans shouldn't expect him to become a head coach again. He is coaching his grandson, linebacker/receiver Tommy Vassallo, and enjoying it because he doesn't have all the other duties that took up his time as head coach and athletic director.
"I don't have to worry about taking tickets, phone calls, doing the laundry and opening up the locker room and make sure the kids are in the weight room," Maechtle said. "They (players) ask questions; I give them answers. They can accept it or reject it, and that's fun."
The 62-year-old Maechtle, who retired as athletic director last spring, is an avid golfer. But his golfing ends around 1 p.m., and that's when his day was just getting busy during football season.
"There was a little bit of a void because a lot of my day began at 3 o'clock and then there was the thing with my grandson," Maechtle said.
After several days of coaching at Cardinal Mooney, Maechtle came to the conclusion that he wasn't needed. It's one of the few football things he gets wrong.
"I got here and told them after the second day of practice they don't need me. They care about coaching the kids and the kids play very hard and very well," Maechtle said.
Cardinal Mooney head coach Josh Smithers quickly put that idea to rest.
"We want him and we need him. He is going to be a great asset," Smithers said.
It was during Smithers' junior and senior years at Cardinal Mooney (1993 and '94) when Southeast won back-to-back state titles under Maechtle with Peter Warrick as its star player.
He never forgot, but could only dream about working with Maechtle.
But the 37-year-old Smithers sensed football flowed through Maechtle's veins and about four months ago presented the idea to him about getting back into it.
"We saw each other at a football clinic and talked. I was trying to feel him out like, 'Are you done, done coaching," Smithers said. "I sent him my playbook and some videos. We talked some more, and he started getting excited."
Everybody on the coaching staff and the players have taken to Maechtle and like the way he doesn't try to impose his will.
Cardinal Mooney offensive coordinator Jared Clark was an all-state quarterback for the Cougars and played tight end at Notre Dame. He was a senior when Adrian McPherson was lighting up the airways under Maechtle.
"Coach Maechtle is a legend in my eyes. He has forgotten more football than I've ever been taught," Clark said. "He is a gift to have, and we as a staff are going to try and pick his brains as much as possible. Hanging around him, it's obvious how much he loves football, so it's not surprising he is here."
Cardinal Mooney senior receiver Blair Perry, who grew up watching Southeast football games, said it's an honor to be coached by Maechtle.
"Its fun and you learn a lot. He gives you tips on how to run routes and how to block and brings a lot of energy to practice," Blair said.