I Blog For Books

08 January 2010

God Is In Control

Last night's BCS National Championship game was the meeting of two football dynasties. Alabama's Crimson Tide came into this game the overwhelming favorite, in search of their first national title since 1992. The Texas Longhorns were not only ranked second in the nation, but were coming into the game as the underdogs. I'm not going to get into a bowl game history lesson, but some seemed to forget that the last time Texas played for a national championship, they were also the underdogs. Led by Vince Young, they defeated the highly touted USC team in 2005 to take the national title back to Austin.

Reading the posts attached to several of the game stories this morning, I am extremely disappointed. The nasty jibes and often foul comments are simply unnecessary. Yes, this was the ultimate college football game. There could only be one winner. What happened? On the fifth play of the game, Longhorn senior quarterback Colt McCoy was injured. Colt McCoy is not the only quarterback at Texas, nor is he the only player on the team, but when those three words "McCoy is injured" boomed from the television speakers, Texas fans worldwide sat up a little straighter and wondered how this would affect the outcome of this final game of his college career.

Replaced by freshman Garrett Gilbert, McCoy spent the rest of the first half in the locker room and xray in an attempt to determine whether or not he would be able to return to the game. Despite multiple sacks, Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy led the Tide to a 24-6 lead at halftime. Questioned, both coaches simply stated that the game's strategy would change. For Mack Brown and the Longhorns, it would be a fight to get back into the game with an untested leader. For Nick Saban and the Tide, it would be adjusting for the freshman quarterback they were now facing.

Shortly after the start of the second half, fans learned that McCoy would not be returning. He stayed on the sidelines, talked with his predecessor Vince Young, and encouraged his teammates. The Longhorns rallied to within 3 points, but fell to the Tide 37-21. What I was most proud of was the way that both coaches and most of the players handled themselves during this game. After the game, Nick Saban could have gloated. He didn't. He spoke quietly and respectfully of the quality of both teams, giving credit to an excellent season played by the Longhorns under the leadership of Mack Brown. Cut to Colt McCoy. My first thought was "leave the poor guy alone!" That thought went away as soon as the obviously emotional McCoy began speaking.

He told Lisa Salters that he would have liked nothing better than to play, but that he couldn't feel his arm. Say what you want about that, and I'm no quarterback (I'm not even remotely close to an athlete), but if you can't feel your extremities, their usefulness and accuracy are both about tied for zero. McCoy went on to say that "I always give God the glory. I never question why things happen the way they do. God is in control of my life. And I know that if nothing else, I'm standing on the Rock." With those words, I believe we saw the real McCoy.

College football is over for the year. The national championship title returned to Tuscaloosa. For those fans who can only find nasty things to say about either team, their coaches, or about McCoy's injury, God help you. While it's fun to shout and fun to cheer, in the end, it's still just a game. Don't make it more than it is. Growing up and living in the football-loving south, I am very familiar with the phrase "football isn't a matter of life and death, it's way more important than that!" It isn't. When judgment day comes, I seriously doubt God will be concerned with your devotion to your favorite football team, but will instead be wondering why it couldn't have been directed toward His team.

God, please help me never to forget that you are in control. Open my mind and heart so that I may receive your guidance, and continue along the path that you have chosen for me.

"A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control."~Proverbs 29:11 NIV

2 comments:

  1. Denise, you are an amazing writer, my goodness....I loved what you wrote here and agree 100% with everything that you said. I watched the game too and am an avid fan , my brother was the first "BiG AL " at bama so we have lots of history there. Glad bama won But what Colt said brought me down to earth . Hes awsome and he realized who he needed to give glory to weather injured or not.God Bless him and he will prevail in the end!

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  2. I agree with donna...you are an incredible writer. It is because of the bad sportsmanship of the fans that has all but driven me away from college football.

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