There’s beauty in it!

On the TunneySide of Sports September 18, 2017 # 658 Up Next…” There’s beauty in it!”
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS September 11, 2017, #658 Up Next… “There’s beauty in it!”

After further review…Pete Carroll, current head coach of the Seattle Seahawks was the head football coach at the University of Southern California (2000-2009) who brought the Trojans 2 national championships. Although Carroll left U.S.C. with a recruiting scandal that cost the Trojans athletic scholarships, he took his personal skills into the southern California community to help others. One of those that caught Carroll’s attention was Jake Olson, listed currently as #61 in your Trojan football program, but soon to be #1 in your heart.

You see, Olson is blind!

Yes, a blind football player on a major college football team (D-1)! He is the long-snapper – that’s the player who snaps the ball to the holder of a placekick for the extra point. Olson, a 6’4” – 20-year-old junior, has been blind since age 12. He was born with retinoblastoma, cancer of the retina, and had his left eye removed when he was a baby, followed by the removal of his right eye at age 12. His long-snapping began at Lutheran High School in Orange County, CA. His early ambition was golf, as he wanted to be the “first blind golfer to play on the PGA tour.”

His long-snap in the game against Western Michigan at the Los Angeles Coliseum earlier this month contributed to U.S.C.’s 49th point. It all came about when current U.S.C. coach, Clay Helton, called Western Michigan coach Tim Lester. Helton told Lester of his plan and is reported to have said. “When you score your first touchdown in our game, our defensive lineman will not rush to block your try-for-point. In return when we score our last touchdown, we will put Olsen in the game as our long-snapper and ask you do the same.” Lester agreed.

When the Trojans’ Marvel Tell III returned an interception for S.C.s final touchdown, Helton called timeout. Olson trotted onto the field with his hand on the shoulder of Wyatt Schmidt, the placekick holder. The umpire placed his hand on Olsen’s shoulder telling him to wait until all players were in proper position, then he tapped Olson twice indicating it was okay to snap. As planned, the Bronco players stayed frozen. The snap was flawless and the kick split the uprights. U.S.C. won the game 49 – 31.

The Trojans’ special teams coach, John Baxter, put it in perspective when he said, “Certain things are bigger than the game.” Olson followed with, “If you can’t see how God works things out, then you’re the blind one. That’s the beauty of it.

Will you see sports as something bigger than just a game?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

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Protesting the Flag

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS September 11, 2017, #657 Up Next… “Protesting the Flag”
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS September 11, 2017, #657 Up Next… “Protesting the Flag”

After further review…Since the 2017 National Football League season has begun, will we see a continuation of players protesting social conditions in our country by not standing for the National Anthem? I read recently of one side of the issue that bears repeating. It was from a long-time NFL season ticket holder and a retired military officer. His words were as follows:

I missed the 1990-91 season because I was with a battalion in Desert Storm, where 14 of my fellow soldiers came home with the American Flag draped over their coffins. The many wars we have fought have produced thousands of those coffins. Now we watch multi-millionaire stars, who lives have mostly consisted of playing a game, disrespect what brave Americans fought and died for. The NFL is complicit in this by fining players for their on and off field infractions, but lack the moral courage and respect for our nation to take a firm action on these protests. Yes, granted, it’s their First Amendment right. But what if they publicly disrespected opponents and game officials? Would they be disciplined?

Many fans will turn off their TV, as will I, when any team that allows this disrespect to occur, without consequences. When the national anthem is performed, respect goes to those who stand, with their hand over their heart, in gratitude for the privilege of playing in the NFL. Why is taunting of an opponent not allowed by NFL rules, yet taunting of America is OK?

Players are fined for wearing non-approved clothing, yet allow players on the sidelines to kneel or pump their fists. Legends and heroes do not wear shoulder pads. They wear body armor and carry rifles. They make minimum wage and spend months and years away from their families. They don’t do it for three hours on a Sunday afternoon. They do it 24/7 often with lead, not footballs, coming in their direction. They watch their brothers being carried off the battlefield in pieces, many having lost their legs and arms; not just carried on a gurney to get their knees iced.

Some wear blue and risk their lives daily on the streets of America. They wear fire helmets and go upstairs into danger rather than down to safety.

Today, 9-11-2017, 16 years later, we remember the hundreds who gave their lives. Those are our heroes!

Will you log-in your opinion on athletes’ political protests on the field?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

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The Coach!

TunneySideofSports
On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS September 4, 2017, #656 Up Next… “The Coach!”

After further review…When I was 12, my goal for a lifetime job was to be a coach. Maybe my inspiration came from my dad, who spent 10 years as a coach. I was only four years in that role — it was never a job – before moving into school administration, but my goal remained.

Here’s a passage from an earlier book that I wrote, which pays tribute to coaches:

Thanks for the special gifts that you give to your athletes. You learn their names and speak to them on and off the field. You teach them the basics of your sport as well as ways to improve and excel. Although you have a whole T*E*A*M of kids to mentor, you take time for an individual’s needs. Under your leadership kids are often transformed from timid and doubting young people to strong, happy players willing to give their all for the T*E*A*M.

When kids give their best, even though it may not have been quite good enough to win, you recognize their contributions with a pat on the back or an encouraging word.

Your wise approach shows that, although winning is the goal, there are other goals just as worthy. Your athletes learn the value of finishing what was started and the joy of personal accomplishment. Those attributes will carry them through a season of hard work. fun, resolve, defeat and victory.

In the face of a challenge, you teach them to go through, not around that challenge. And if your season results in a championship and the kids bring home an award, you are among those who are so very proud of how far they have come. It becomes a victory for all, not for just one.

What is amazing is you do it year in and year out, as if each season were your first time! You teach them skills that will last a lifetime. You continuously encourage them to excel and you’ll do that again next year with a totally new group. Others may never comprehend the full extent of your contributions to those young athletes, contributions that will shape the world that each of them will inhabit.

Many of these athletes’ families will, one day, look at the ribbons, trophies, medals as mere symbols of the real gifts, which have come straight from your heart.

The TunneySide believes all teachers are coaches as well.

Will you share a story of a coach or teacher who had an impact on your life?

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To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Jim’s books are full of inspiration and interesting stories. Please visit his online store to learn more.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

Jim is available for speaking engagements on leadership and T*E*A*M Building. His books are available for $20 which includes shipping and tax. The Tunney Bobblehead is available for $30. Please visit JimTunney.com. Thank you!

Posted in Sports, Tunney Side of Sports Columns | Tagged | Leave a comment