Football & Leadership – – Then and Now

February 4, 2013 by  
Filed under A Monday AM BLOG

Where were you when the lights went out in New Orleans?

Last night millions watched (sic) the Super Bowl. That is, until the lights went out. Like much of the American Culture the game has become as much or more about hype and commercials as the game of football. I must admit I watched the entire game, a rare feat for this viewer.

When I was a Senior in high school none other than Lou “The Toe” Groza was the speaker at our Football Banquet. He was the leading scorer in the NFL – – as a tackle. He kicked extra points and field goals. That was in the days when the Cleveland Browns scored touch downs! We were able to get him as our speaker because of his identity with many of the men in the community where I attended school. They were simple men. Many were first generation Americans. They worked in the stone quarry. Our nickname was the “Stonecrushers”.

I never saw Lou dance after a score. I never saw him abuse his coach or a referee. I never saw him rip his jersey to shreds and strut around like a wounded peacock. I never heard him use vulgar and foul language in an interview – there was no need to bleep bleep Mr. Groza’s speech. He just did his job and he did it so very well. He is an NFL Hall of Famer and rightly so.

There is a correlation between the conduct of contemporary athletes and leadership. Many leaders are all hype. They preen, prance and dance to draw attention to themselves. In the Old Testament only 3 in 10 leaders finished well. When they became proficient they also often became proud. You know the rest of that story. Pride comes before the fall and fall they did.

The world and most certainly the church can use some “Lou The Toe” types of leaders. Men who are incredibly proficient and effective. After they ‘score’ they simply go back to playing tackle with a quiet excellence that makes them true champions. Thanks Lou!


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