Your boys are listening...but are you talking?

Virtues: 

 

 
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I started doing SportsLeader back in 2005, while coaching football at Cincinnati Moeller High School with Bob Crable. Mentoring was (and still is!) a key component of those early years doing SportsLeader and I was privileged to be able to mentor many great young men coaching football in those years at Moeller. One of my favorites was (and still is!) Germaine Lindsey, Class of 2007 Moeller High School.

 
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Germaine played defensive back in football his junior year. But wrestling was really Germaine's sport, placing third in the OHSAA state finals that junior year. However, during that junior football year, I was able to talk to Germaine regularly, encouraging him even though he wasn't a starter on the football team. I encouraged him to mentor his younger brother, setting weekly resolutions to spend time with him.

 
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Germaine decided to focus on wrestling his senior year at Moeller. I missed him tremendously during football! But his decision payed off, with Germaine winning the 2007 OHSAA State Championship at 140 lbs. He earned a scholarship to Ohio University where Germaine continued his wrestling prowess placing 8th in the NCAA tourney his junior year at 141 lbs. gaining All-American status.

 
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Germaine is currently serving as an asst. wrestling coach back at Archbishop Moeller this year. I see and work with him and the Moeller wrestling team once a week. We talk often! I encourage him to talk to the wrestlers, doing 1 on 1's, getting to know them, helping them improve their skills and just be there for them. Germaine eagerly listens....he wants to be a great coach!

 
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Over the weekend, at the OHSAA District tournament(where Moeller placed 9 out of 13 wrestlers..ON TO STATE!) I talked to Germaine again. At the end of our conversation in passing, I encouraged him to take his mentoring to another level, the more he got to know the kids. We hugged and high-fived and got to work getting the Moeller wrestlers ready.....our conversation forgotten....or so I thought.

 

Yesterday at the end of practice, us coaches gave some words of wisdom to the Moeller wrestlers preparing them for the OHSAA tourney starting Thursday, February 28th-March 2nd. At Germaine's turn, he talked about getting enough sleep, a wrestler must prepare his body. He then paused....."Also make sure you get right with God before Thursday. I believe God's spirit is with us, and it's the right thing to be right with God before the tourney starts. I did it and He definitely helped me." Wow! What great wisdom and great courage! It was exactly what needed to be said and I couldn't have said it better.

Walking out of the room, I complemented Germaine for his words of wisdom... He looked at me-STRAIGHT IN THE EYE and said, "You told me to take it to another level, and that's what I did, Coach."

We have no idea the impact we are making on the young men we work with daily. SportsLeader urges you NOT to neglect the power of mentoring. Your boys are listening......take the time to talk to them!