Hearts are heavy in some places tonight, many will find tomorrow comes too early for a head that needs relief. At times we all overdo what we should, and that includes taking every game on the schedule too seriously.
What does it matter if our school loses one game, I ask you? Did Ohio State fall off the map when they lost to USC? The Trojan family spent Friday consoling themselves over the unbelievable loss to someone they were sure to defeat.
Two days later, Southern Cal has actually moved up from where they seemed on Thursday night due to other top-ranked teams losing on Saturday. Two of those, Florida and Georgia, may find little comfort in this letter because of the bitter pill of disappointment and anger.
I say to fans of the Bulldogs, Gators, Badgers, Gophers, Demon Deacons, Buffaloes, Cornhuskers, and Trojans, take heart. There are a couple of sure things at work here to ease you through this crisis.
One is that no matter how hard it is to swallow, defeat can be a good thing for the soul of your team. It gives the players, coaches, and fans, the opportunity to re-examine priorities.
Did you do everything you should have done with your daily lives as this week passed along? If you didn't, can you expect the players to do differently? Did the players fail to heed the advice of those who know that one doesn't pass through this life undefeated?
Secondly, on a less cerebral level, the simple truth is that it rarely matters if you lose a game early in the year. LSU lost their LAST regular season game of the year and won the national title last season.
Your team will get over it. If they have what it takes to be the ultimate winner, they will get everything out of their ability the rest of the way. They know they musn't fail, they recognize their shortcomings, and they will move to improve their weaknesses.
Life will be a series of challenges that we all must face. How well we, and those we care about, adjust to those demands determines whether we can view ourselves as "winners."
The folks I write back and forth with in the Bleacher Report Community are all winners. There's not one of you who hasn't demonstrated confidence, creativity, and reasoning.
So, let us reason together, next week we will back in the saddle portraying all the same villains in our teams' lives, extolling all the great virtues of the great masters who played before them, and appreciating the excellence of the current members of our team.
So, until we meet again, let us remember this statement from the recently departed Paul Newman.
In his magnificent role as the title character in 1963's blockbuster film "HUD," he turns to his nephew and states: "It's competition, and how you handle competition, that makes you the person you are in life."
Rest assured, we'll meet again next week and challenge each other to greater heights.
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