I had the perfect setup: I was pumped full of coffee, my jersey was on, friends were gathered, and I had ordered over 150 glorious wings of differing taste and spice level. I was even comfortable rooting for a team that my grandfather swore to hate beginning in 1984. The perfect to setup to celebrate a second Superbowl for the Indianapolis Colts, and my favorite player, Peyton Manning.
It was promising...they looked great for a while. I got got excited and then...
they ripped my heart out.
I've lost some heartbreaking games as a player, and later as a coach. I've cheered for some really bad teams (Long-standing Orioles fan right here) in my time, but this one made me sick. I stayed away from ESPN, ESPNRADIO, and readied myself for the barrage of "Manning hating" that would happen all around me. It was watching a team snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. It was the reversal of all the fourth quarter comebacks that Colts fans have just come to expect. And I, the fan, had no game check or vacation to medicate my pain. While I snapped out of it fairly quickly, I still get frustrated thinking about it.
You may be saying, "hey Scott - February called, and it wants its headline back." Here's my heart....we're approaching March Madness, another great sporting event. Unless you're my intern, who cheers for North Carolina or whoever else is winning, you may have a team of choice. There's a good chance that team is going to let you down this month...
Some are Hoosiers...waiting for the 2nd incarnation of coach Knight, minus the choking thing...oh, and while your down, let me kick you by reminding you of what happened the last time IU was in a title game (Fear the turtle)
Some are Boilermakers...and you've watched a hopeful season crumble in the wake of a knee injury.
Some are Bulldogs...and there's a great excitement about how far you can go.
and lastly, some are fans of whoever may win them the office pool (and yes Lindsay, I'm prepared to lose to you, and my wife, and three other wives, again this year).
All around the country, with sporting events, we'll take a good thing, and make it a god thing...and that'll be a bad thing. I did it a month ago with the Colts, and, if I'm not careful, the Madness of March, and an eight game maryland winning streak, will sweep me away into placing worship in the wrong place. For those who will scoff at us and say, "yeah, we told you, it's just a game," you'll do it with money, relationships, comfort, status, popularity, or a variety of other things.
Sports are great at reminding me that people make terrible gods, as they cannot deliever what they promise. In all the madness of march, marriage, or your job, remember the one who can promise (and not fail you) - "NEVER WILL I LEAVE YOU OR FORSAKE YOU."