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Sunday, July 28, 2013

TEAMMATES

The following comes from "Inside Out Coaching" by Joe Ehrmann:

Oneness -- a team is One.  What more liberating experience is there than to feel whole, purposeful, and in sync?  My most glorious moments as a player occurred when every moving part on the team worked together and I played my role in concert with my teammates.

Emmitt Smith was recently inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame.  With tears of gratitude, he thanked his family, former coaches, and teammates for helping him reach the pinnacle of achievement.  But his heartfelt thanks went to Daryl Johnston, the Cowboys fullback who cleared the path for many of Smith's great runs.

"You mean the world to me," the tearful Smith told Johnson, asking him to stand up and be recognized by the crowd, "not just because we shared the backfield, but because you sacrificed so much for me.  You took care of me as though you were taking care of your little brother.  Without you I know today would not have been possible.  I love you from the bottom of my heart."

This epitomizes the transformative power of community. Johnston liberated Smith literally and figuratively on and off the field. And I am sure Johnston would say the same of Smith.  African American Emmitt Smith from Pensacola, Florida and the University of Florida pronouncing his love and affection for white Daryl Johnston from Youngstown, New York, and Syracuse University.  We need each other, we belong to each other, we effect each other, and together we can liberate sports, players, coaches, schools communities, and a whole country of young people.