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Showing posts from November, 2011

We need a fullback!

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When I went to Columbus the other weekend, I stayed with Lisa, a good friend who is a world-class competitor in dog agility and a dog trainer, who was adopting a border collie puppy. She was in charge of watching the litter (of only four, all boys, five-weeks old) for a week, so while I was there, I helped socialize and look after them.

We had to rename them all to keep track … one in particular was my favorite because he scrambled out of my arms to the end of the couch, plopped down and proceeded to watch the NFL game on tv. The markings on his head (above), combined with a funny quip from Coach S this season in the press box (“Boys, I just need someone who can carry the tater!”) resulted in his nickname of “Tater.”

The best part: my friend decided little Tater is the one she’s keeping from the litter. Instead of traveling to do agility, Tater will be a dedicated therapy dog – trained to go into nursing homes, hospitals and the like – to be a comfort to patients and their families.

Dear Class of 2015,

I know it is with a heavy heart that we all left the 2011 football season. It is never easy to end on a loss, especially one so contentious.

I hope you know how much success we had as a team and as individuals.

The joy of coaching for me happens when the lightbulbs illuminate in each of you, whether it’s on the field or off. That critical moment transfers potential into actual – theoretical into real.

There are 100 examples from this season … and to the last minutes of our last game. I’ve written about joy and the role I think that plays in motivation, and I’ve experienced the heartache with each of you in failure, loss and regret. I hope that we’ve set a strong foundation for you as leaders of the future, each with a different skill set, each with a different motivation, but each with a lightbulb switched on.

I hope you’ll take to heart the advice of Coach W and Coach L – we lose games in the weightroom, in the off-season, on the weekends. The will to win is defined by choices we all mak…