During my coaching career, I always talked to my players about doing the right thing the right way. I wasn’t always certain I was getting through to some of the guys, including defensive end Regan Upshaw, who was known for his colorful personality. Years later, my family and I ran into Regan and his family when we all happened to be vacationing in Rome.
In the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona,Spain, Derek Redmond believed he could win a silver medal for Great Britain. After five years of daily training and eight operations on his Achilles tendons, Derek had won the first two heats and was running in the semifinals of the 400 meters.
Jim Brewer was an All-American basketball player at the University of Minnesota who also played on the 1972 U.S. Olympic basketball team. He was an amazingly gifted player and the driving force behind Minnesota’s rise from Big-Ten doormat to conference champion.
In March 2009, Chicago Public Schools administrators proposed a new rule prohibiting high school coaches from using profanity while performing their coaching responsibilities. To my amazement, I was asked to go on a national radio show, not to debate whether this was a good rule, but to discuss whether it was even possible for coaches to comply.
We often mirror what we see. Coaches will model the behavior of successful coaches they know or observe, sometimes with detrimental results. Similarly, business leaders model other business leaders or when necessary, try to do the opposite, whatever that might be.
Lauren and I have been married for almost thirty-four years now. Over that time we have created a lot of memories. We have supported and encouraged one another. Sometimes that has been easy, while other times it has been a choice. Plenty of our marriage has been spent working out our differences, but in the […]
When I played football in college at Minnesota, Coach Cal Stoll was one of the first CEO-type coaches. Most of the coaches I had seen previously, such as my high school coach Dave Driscoll, coached either the offense or the defense in addition to performing the duties of a head coach. Coach Stoll did not. He wasn’t one of those tower-type coaches like Bear Bryant at Alabama, who was far removed from the field. Coach Stoll hired great teachers as his assistants and then gave them the latitude to coach. He set the vision and direction, motivated the team, then let assistants coaches do the coaching.
Coach Stoll held a meeting with the freshmen every year. That meeting had a big impact on me. I’ll never forget what he told us.
My father has always been a big part of my life. When I was a teenager he took a job as a teacher at a college in ______ which was around two hours away from our home in Jackson, Michigan. Since we wanted to finish high school in Jackson he sacrificed and lived away from us for a time. I didn’t realize how difficult that must have been until I experienced the same thing coaching the Colts while my family remained in Tampa. However, even though he was living far from us he was still engaged in our lives and unified with my mom. He would always talk to us on the phone and spend many hours in the car driving to our events to remain connected. I always felt loved and that he was there for me.
Those are some of the things I think about when I remember my father. He was self sacrificing and always present. When people ask me, “How do you want to be remembered as a father?” I think it would come down to the following things.
“Young kids with positive male role models have something to live for, somebody who is proud of them, somebody who cares about their well-being.” –Donald Miller If you follow professional football, or just read the news, you’re probably familiar with the story of Michael Vick. A star quarterback with elusive speed and remarkable athleticism, Michael […]
Early in the 20th Century the city of Montgomery, Alabama passed laws that segregated buses. The front section was for whites and the back was for blacks. The sections were divided by a sign labeled “colored” and could be moved at the discretion of the bus driver. Another stipulation of the law was that when there were white riders already seated in the front section, boarding black passengers were required to enter the front to pay, then exit the bus and walk to re-enter through the door in the back.
In 1943 an African American woman entered one of these buses and, after paying, walked straight to the back and sat down. The bus driver told her to get up and exit the bus and enter through the door in the back as the law required. She exited the bus and waited for the next one, committing to never ride that driver’s bus again. That woman’s name was Rosa Parks. Twelve years later she would enter his bus again. This time when he told her to give up her seat for a white male passenger she refused. Despite the potential consequences of being arrested, losing her job, or even physical violence she had the courage of conviction to stand for what was right.