A Teachable Moment
Oh football. That game that builds you up and breaks you down. It destroys your body, breaks your heart and makes you whole again. It's the blood, sweat and tears mixed with spirit, dedication and respect that makes football one of the greatest games ever!
I'm fortunate enough to work with the football program at Coronado High School here in Lubbock as the booster president. I have great relationships with the players, the coaches, the parents and the fans. It's a family. I keep in touch with these kids even after they have graduated. I've seen these football players that I love so much experience every emotion in one single game and the coaches, fans and I experience the same emotion right along with them. I've seen them make mistakes, start fights, throw things and break down. That's football.
The reason I tell you all this is because I want you to know that while I am no expert in football - I know enough to form a reasonable opinion about the Sherman/Crabtree drama that unfolded after the NFC Championship game between the Seattle Seahawks and San Fransisco 49ers. Fox's Sports gave a brief summary of the events with video that I recommend watching.
As I scrolled through my Twitter and Facebook feeds after the game, I saw some harmless bantering as some of my past and present football players and coaches picked sides and voiced their opinions. Every single one of them had great points, but the best point made was that Sherman's interview outburst is a "Teachable Moment" and oh how I agree!
It's football. That's it. FOOTBALL! Emotions are high and adrenaline is coursing through the veins. If you think for 2 seconds that players aren't bad mouthing each other before, during and after the game then you need to be watching golf. (for the record - I like golf too) Does this mean that one player should bad mouth another player for 20 seconds on national TV? No. Is it going to happen? Yes. Does that 20 seconds define that person? Maybe. I don't know. I hope not. People say things they shouldn't all of the time - and when you couple that with the emotion of winning such a battle - you get a 20 second Richard Sherman interview after winning the NFC Championship.
I agree that it was disappointing and upsetting listening to Sherman bad mouth Crabtree. I love Crabtree! I thought it was tacky, disrespectful and uncalled for. But I don't think Sherman should go in front of the firing squad - that's ridiculous! Everyone needs to just calm down a minute. Sherman made a poor choice in interview topics. He didn't commit treason!
And for every one of you that now hope the Seahawks lose the Super Bowl based off one man's lapse in judgement then shame on you. You're not a fan of football. Clearly you don't even understand football. Go watch synchronized swimming or something (for the record - I have nothing against synchronized swimming.)
In my opinion here's the lessons from this Teachable Moment.
Football players: never EVER disrespect another player - whether he's on your team or the opposing team. Football embodies hard work and is founded on discipline and respect - and as a player it is your responsibility to represent that on and off the field and on and off the camera.
Fans/General Public: remember that this is football - not the opera (for the record I enjoy the opera) - bones are going to break and feelings are going to get hurt because every football player plays with such high emotions that it is near impossible to shut down right after a game - especially a championship game.
Michael Crabtree is a fantastic and very talented football player. Richard Sherman is as well. Put those two against each other in a championship game and you better believe words are going to be spoken. IT'S FOOTBALL!
(And for the record - I say - SHERMAN - SIT YOUR DIVA SELF DOWN AND SHUT UP!)