As one season winds down, the tendency is to look ahead to the season to come, and admittedly, because I am always in "distance" mode, I even look beyond that to Cross Country. This fall is a pivotal season for you as well as your coach. Following the 2018 XC season it was decided that we would wait until August to formally name Captains. Team members were asked to nominate themselves for consideration and a number of you have. I sincerely appreciate your interest. Over the past few weeks I have thought about our XC teams and which student-athletes will emerge as leaders in August. Certainly summer training and preparation will play a role in who is ultimately selected. But there are many traits which make one a leader. For those interested in the job, it is your assignment to determine those traits and incorporate them into your daily routine. Anybody my age knows of former UCLA basketball coach, John Wooden. Whether you've ever played or coached basketball, or even know what one is, Coach Wooden was an incredible motivator. Dozens of times in my life I've been drawn to his quotes for guidance and motivation, but now I am providing you with one to ponder:
My primary concern in posting this today however, is not necessarily for the potential Captains, but for those many others whose time has not yet arrived or will not be named or selected, because it will be those student-athletes who will be asked to follow two or three of their teammates. They will NOT follow slackers, malingerers or excuse makers. They will NOT accept Captains who don't make attending practice and giving 100% each and every day his/her personal priority. They WILL follow teammates who love their sport, are committed to their team, work hard every day to improve and behave as role models inside and outside of athletics. Can you measure up?
I'm reminded of a scene from a movie I enjoyed several times and which is apropos here: