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Bonnie Richardson: How Can One Person Be Better Than a Whole Team?

BEIJING - AUGUST 15:  (L-R) Mestawet Tufa Demisse of Ethiopia and Lornah Kiplagat of Netherlands lead the field in the Women's 10,000m Final at the National Stadium on Day 7 of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on August 15, 2008 in Beijing, China.  (Photo by Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)
Samantha CookeCorrespondent IJune 9, 2009

Today, we live in a society where more individual athletes are recognized than teams.  In the NBA, it was not about having the LA Lakers versus Cleveland Cavaliers in the finals—it was about Kobe versus Lebron. 

Even in the NHL, where the best teams prevail, had a matchup of Ovechkin versus Crosby.  We live in a day where children root for individuals as much as teams.  They do not necessarily like the Indianapolis Colts, but they love Peyton Manning.

Enter high school athletics—the true meaning of team.  Besides the handful of kids receiving scholarships to college, you live and die with your team.

How do you live and die with your team when your team consists of one person?  How difficult would it be to compete against teams from bigger schools with 40 kids on their teams?

Do not tell Rochelle High School senior Bonnie Richardson that she cannot compete.  Do not tell her that she may lose track meets or face difficulties because she is the only one on her high school girls track team.

Richardson did something that no other female in the state of Texas has done—she won a track team title by herself.

Yes, Richardson won a Class 1A team title alone.

Not only did she do this once, Richardson did it twice.  She won the state title last year and this year.

One thing is for sure: next year will have a new state title winner, or will it?  If Richardson did this in your high school, wouldn't you want to join the team? 

Talk about an inspiration.  Forget about Kobe, LeBron, and Crosby.  Even they need points and assists from teammates.  This is a girl who needed no help from anyone.

She did not even get help from her home track, which is basically an oval around the football field.  This is something that may never happen again—embrace this and embrace the athlete, even if she is not old enough to drink yet.

Due to her amazing feat, Richardson received a full athletic scholarship to Texas A&M.  One thing is for sure: she will not have to try and win a national championship on her own.

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