Life lessons from the gridiron

By David WilliamsBy David Williams

 It would be an understatement to say we love our football here in the south.
    I have friends who actually count down the days until the first kickoff.
    Just the other day, I was standing on the 13th green when Todd randomly called out a number.
    I was confused because it didn’t sound like a number that reflected his score for that particular hole.
    When I asked him to clarify, Todd informed me that he was talking about the number of days until Alabama’s season starts.
    Although I don’t follow football like many of my devoted friends, during this time of year I cannot help but think about all the life lessons football taught me.
    To wit:
    1. BYOB (Bring your own blocking). Sometimes you have to make a hole for yourself.
    2. You’d better have a back-up plan. In football, we call it an audible. It doesn’t matter what play the quarterback called in the huddle; be prepared to change it at the line of scrimmage.
    3. If you want to have a good season, you’d better have a good offseason. Luck happens when opportunity meets preparation.
    4. Keep your head on a swivel, because you never know when or where a hit is coming from. The old television commercial is true – life comes at you fast, so it’s best to be prepared.
    5. Some of your greatest victories are fourth down and inches away – you are so close and yet so far away. Most people don’t like to face those situations, but there is strength to be gained from such battles.
    6. As it is in football, so it is in life – you have to know when it is time to punt.
    7. Parents should instill a little bit of quarterback mentality in their child. Every quarterback worth his salt can’t wait to get back under center following his worst mistake. Signal-callers are taught to have a short memory and a positive attitude.
    8. Make it happen! No excuses allowed.
    9. It doesn’t matter how many times you are knocked down. What matters is how often you get back up.
    10. Practice makes perfect. Regardless of your career choice, you have got to work at it.
    11. Read and react. Adapt, improvise, and overcome. This lesson speaks for itself.
    12. Janet Jackson is correct. The question is, “What have you done lately?” The sooner you realize this, the better off you will be. You cannot rest on your laurels. There is always someone on the depth chart waiting to take your place.
    13. The best person doesn’t always start. This is the introduction to politics. Get used to it; it’s everywhere. Life isn’t fair.
    14. Surround yourself with people you can go to battle with. You cannot do it yourself.
    15. In football we huddle to call a play. In life, we huddle to pray.
    16. It’s always important to know your opponent.
    17. Always have a game plan and keep a playbook handy.
    In life, we call that a Bible.

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