Two Players Address Their Teams

Here are a few great stories from Nazareth Academy near Chicago IL. Consistent mentoring over a three year period is definitely making a difference.

If you'd like to watch a short video testimony from a former Nazareth player, Mike Williams, click on the link

Hi Lou,
I wanted to write a follow up story to Coach Racki's comments below.

While mentoring today one of our freshman players today at practice, I was able to use the example below to strike a cord with this young man.

During our friday night game, this player had a very difficult time with not being giving the opportunity to punch in one our touchdowns. He is a very talented athlete who happens to be the youngest on the team. Because of his selfish behavior, he was pulled out of the game. Yesterday he was told by the head coach that he would be held accountable by sitting out the first quarter of our upcoming game and he again proceeded in a childish fashion by threatening to quit the team. As you can imagine he was a distraction for the rest of that practice.

Today was different though when we sat down to mentor. He felt better and was receptive to discuss the events of the past several days. He was remorseful about telling me to get lost at the game when I tried to comfort him. I told him that I prayed he could come to terms with the punishment he was given. He relayed his feelings of being out of control and guilt about comments made about his teammate  who actually got to score the TD. I went on to relay the story told below of how this varsity player was humble enough to apologize to his team.

Before we prayed at the end of today's practice, he asked to step up and address the team. He started by saying he didn't know what got into him, never having done anything like this in the past. He turned toward the player he defamed and told him that he deserved the TD and ended by apologizing to the team.

After 3 years of sportsleader at Nazareth, one can see the rewards of our efforts. We are developing virtuous leaders on the varsity who are becoming role models for the younger players.

Have a great day,

Hi Lou,

Thanks! It has been fun. Winning can be fun if you do it the right way and I would like to believe that's what we are doing.

One of the really neat mentoring things that has caught my attention this year has been the accountability issue. Just this past Saturday one of our
players was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct. After the game, amid the celebration, and right before I was going to let them go to the locker room,
the player stopped me and asked if he could address the team. He sincerely, apologized for his actions said he let them down and that it would not
happen again. A little thing, but something this kid would not have done if not for what we preach. 

This has happened quite a bit without my prompting with players who are late to practice, got detentions in school ect... Seeing them take the initiative to accept responsibility has been a great memory of this team up to this point. 

Also...just yesterday our Principal (Deborah Vondrasek) commented on our players conduct at the homecoming dance....spirited, respectful, polite, very impressive for a team that could have very easily let all of this success go to their heads. 

I told them at this morning's meeting I was more proud of those comments than what any scoreboard may read.

Take care Lou.