We have a problem.
We think that a winning effort is somehow over the top.
We think that just because we work hard enough to break a sweat, we deserve to win.
When we don’t win we start looking for reasons other than our own effort. We do this because we think we are giving a winning effort, but we are really not.
We think the effort needed in order to win is too painful, too time consuming, too demanding. We can’t imagine that winning takes such a huge sacrifice. We think it is way over the top to expect to have to do so much in order to win.
We think it’s over the top for a lacrosse player to take almost every face off, run up and down the field with the first midfield, play great defense, leave guys in the dust on offense, be unselfish with the ball, never complain, play within the rules, lift weights without being told, encourage his teammates and do it all as a freshman and sophomore.
We think it’s over the top for a football player to break his leg in October, hobble through basketball practices all winter, run the bases in the spring, and run hills all summer, in order to rise to a senior year where he sets the school record in the 40 yard dash, becomes MVP of a district championship team, a contributor to a playoff basketball team and a starter on a state finalist baseball team and do it all while getting grades that are worthy of Ivy League schools.
We think it’s over the top for a football player to lead both his football and lacrosse teams in scoring his junior and senior years, while taking 8 classes a day even though we only have 7 periods in a school day.
We think it’s over the top for a football player to break his leg in his first ever football game freshmen year, and work his way to a senior year where he becomes the MVP of a Super Bowl football team, a starter on a state champion hockey team and a starter in the state finals for the baseball team.
We think it’s over the top for a football player to lose both his parents before he is sixteen, and yet captain both his football and basketball teams and earn an athletic scholarship to college.
We think it’s over the top for a kid to lift every summer morning 3x a week since before his freshmen year and then ride his bike back home to Granville ( 14 miles with a 900 ft. uphill change in elevation) in order to become the first all state football player in school history.
We think it is over the top for a kid to start lifting weights the summer before his freshmen year, become a starter by his sophomore year, and do so well his junior year that even though he misses most of his senior season, his athletic and academic work earn him a spot at a service academy where he can get his degree without paying a nickel for it.
We think it’s over the top for a kid who is less than 5-10 to start at quarterback and lead his team to western mass finals in football, hockey, and baseball while being an excellent student and the editor of the school paper.
We think it’s over the top for a kid to start at quarterback and lead his football and lacrosse teams to a combined 26-4 record, while being president of his class.
We think it’s over the top for a kid to come out for football his junior year, lift weights every single day after school, and attend summer camps, in order to eventually be invited to football camp at a Division I program, while being such a good student and citizen that he is offered a full ROTC scholarship.
We think it’s over the top for a group of guys to play basketball 300 days a year in order to take their team to the western mass finals as juniors and seniors.
We think it’s over the top for a group of guys to lift three times a week, every week, even if they are playing other sports, in order to take their team to the Superbowl as juniors and seniors.
Don’t kid yourself. None of those things were over the top. They were just over the average. That’s what winning is, setting yourself above the average. Being a champion is going even further and setting yourself over the top of even the winners.
All of these things happened here within the last six years.
I just want you to know what is possible.