Attention high school and college football players reading this: do you realize how lucky you are? You get to play the greatest sport on the face of the planet with your best friends day in and day out. Sometimes this can get lost in translation during this midseason stretch. The exhilaration of a new season begins to fade, you’re facing opponents that aren’t rivals and won’t affect your playoff picture too much, and school assignments are starting to pick up.
Don’t you dare take this time of the season for granted. Let me say that again for the people in the back; don’t you DARE take this time of the year for granted! You’re going to blink and this beautiful game will be gone. Your friends will move across the country, work a 9-5 job, and communication will fade with most of them. Your priorities will change. You’ll begin to build a career and climb the corporate ladder.
There’s an old saying that rings very true when I think about football. “I wish there was a way to know that you’re in the good old days before they’re gone.” When coach says you’re having a full pad practice on a 90 degree day and you have a test to study for and a project to work on afterwards, your natural response may be to drag yourself through it. I’m here to tell you that you’re going to look back and wish you could have one more day like that. One more chance to strap on the pads again with your brothers. One more chance to make a big play and electrify the crowd.
My goal in writing this article is not to scare you, but to remind you that it can be taken away from you at any moment.
This applies to every athlete that’s hitting a midseason lull! My main love for 10+ years was the gridiron but anything you play will be gone someday. Don’t wait for that day to appreciate it. Cherish every second of the good, the bad and the ugly. Soak it up.