I admit it. I hate the football culture in America. I hate that football players are held out as something special above the rest of the students in a high school. I hate the culture of injury. I hate the way school budgets get slanted in favor of football over athletics — ever so subtly… or not so subtly. I hate how townspeople are willing to approve tax increases for athletic facilities more than they are for text books or teachers.
What I don’t hate is the role of a good coach in the life of youngsters.
A good coach can make all the difference in a kid’s life. Though I never played football, I played for some good coaches — and some horrific ones — in my days as a baseball player. A good coach, you remember.
Take football coach Larry Gilmer of Russellville Middle School in Alabama. He thought he was going to a simple pep rally, but it was much more. Past and present students had gathered to tell him how much he means to them, and to award him with Dove’s Caring Coach of the Year Award. The impact that this special coach has had on them is evident in their hearts and faces. Coach Gilmer truly understands that at the end of the day the question isn’t, “How many games did you win?” but “How many lives did you change?”
So who has made a difference in your life. Whether it was a coach or a teacher or a parent or another adult mentor, today is the day to let them know. Write them a letter, give them a phone call, drop by for a visit and tell them. Tell them they’ve been Awesome. Do it. Today.