Monday, February 25, 2008

Sparkling SPARQ's!!!

I’m all verklamped! I know it looks like you’ve seen this post before, but look a little closer. See that SPARQ rating? My son Demi’s Miami-Nike Combine SPARQ rating was 91.4. That was pretty impressive. He’s already getting a ton of interest from D-1 college coaches inquiring about him. The unbelievable SPARQ rating on this card was from the just concluded Orlando Nike Combine at which there were close to 2000 participants. It was the third highest rating of the entire combine (regardless of position) and is the eighth highest rating nationally from all six Nike Combines held so far. Why is this important enough for me to be bragging about you ask, and why does it warrant a blog post? Duh, well aside from the fact that I am immensely proud of my son, I guess the short answer is that there are leadership lessons all around us. Two weeks ago, after the Miami Combine, I was so excited for my son, and the options he had made available to himself by performing so well. He was the top rated defensive lineman at the Combine, and so I suggested that he forego the Orlando Combine and hang onto the great rating he had just attained.

His reply was an emphatic No! He felt that resting on his laurels was the worst thing he could do, especially because he had set very specific personal goals. His competition, he carefully informed me, wasn’t the other athletes around him, his competition was the personal goals he had set for himself. Because I am this amazingly brilliant, godly, faith-filled and encouraging dad, I reminded him of the potential to do worse at the Orlando Combine, thereby tainting his rating from the superb 91.4 that so many would kill to get. He simply shrugged his shoulders and assured me that that was a chance he was willing to take in order to improve his rating. This past weekend he taught me a valuable lesson in leadership:

You can settle for what you’ve accomplished so far and be quite content that you’ve been reasonably successful, or you can risk it all and take the plunge to go deeper, further, higher and better. There are no guarantees except the guarantee that you will always know that you didn’t settle and you gave it all you had. I’ve always told my son to “Leave it all out on the field.” In other words, don’t come back to me after the game is over and tell me all the things you could have done better. Just Do It! (Sorry Nike, you don’t have exclusive rights to the use of the English language) This past weekend my son returned the favor and placed the lesson squarely in front of my face. The student became the teacher. Demi reminded me that if I must lead effectively, I cannot afford to rest on the accomplishments I’ve already achieved. What did you learn this past weekend?

7 comments:

Joey said...

Go Demi! You are truly an admirable young man. Your strong and quiet presence shows your maturity. Sports in general needs more young men like you with strong faith, family, hard work and dedication. You make your family and us, your friends very, very proud. Forget being like Mike, I wanna be like Demi! :0)

Hope said...

Now that sounds like a faith-filled son, doesn't it?! You and your wife obviously have been amazing examples of godly character in your son's life. Good on you both!

Joseph said...

Joey, I will make sure I pass your comments onto Demi. I figured out that even I want to be like him when I grow up!!! :)

Hope, you are so kind to attribue his faith and character to my wife, Sola, and I. The reality is that it is purely God's grace that has prevailed, as we have simply tried to live godly lives before all of our kids.

thea said...

Awesome!!! Is it fair to say he opened a can of whoop-a on them?? Maybe not...but still...it seems like a good description :) That's so awesome! I probably just ruined all credibility by saying that...sorry - the only way to describe it! AWESOME!

Joseph said...

Thea, if you just lost credibility then you're in great company, because my personal and well informed opinion is that he sure as heck opened up a huge can of whoop a@@ on them!!! :)

completefaith said...

Hearing a good story about a Hero who wins the day always makes me feel good.

Way to go Demi

Thea said...

Haha! Well I'm glad I'm not alone in that...there aren't many better ways to describe a rating like that! GO DEMI!! All the Coloradans who knew you "way back when" are rooting for you!