11 Comments

  1. Jon Heckerman

    As a longtime football fan though never much of a player, in spite of the fact that one of the first toys in my baby crib was a scarlet and grey football, I sorrow for your family and all caught up in the collegiate sport’s current troubles. As a serious student of history, I offer the following. In 1905 there was national conversation considering the abolition of college football not because of corruption but because so many young men were being killed or crippled. Several schools had already dropped the sport and more were considering such action. President Theodore Roosevelt loved most any physical activity and was a football fan. He called a White House Conference with the leaders of the three universities who then set the sport’s rules. That meeting resulted in changes which made the game both safer to play and more exciting to watch. Perhaps the current situation has overwhelmed the NCAA’s ability to police the sport and such a conference would be of value.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you for your comment, Jon. Yes, I think we are at a point in this crisis where some meta-conversation could be more than useful. It is my fear that the NCAA has not only been overwhelmed by the policing they do, but that they have even been compromised by the massive amounts of money involved. The NCAA may be crumbling, too, under the weight of it all. Some people suggest that with the current shuffling of conferences power will soon be so concentrated in giant conferences that the NCAA will no longer have any currency in Division I football. I will be posting in a few days about some of the money issues in particular. Thanks for being a part of this conversation.

      Reply
  2. Rhonda

    Wow, Marcia. I know you’re talking about football, but on the heels of a congregational meeting at my home church last night regarding a divide between the pastor & the Elders, the word “transparency” really struck me. I heard the word “integrity” tossed around last night too. Still processing my thoughts on the unfolding circumstances, but I also related to your thoughts on your “Carolina Way” & our supposed vision. Good food for thought to be sure.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you for your comments, Rhonda. I think you are right–this struggle in football is a mirror for broader cultural struggles in all sorts of institutions. I think of how much political rhetoric involves words like integrity, but not much transparency. I will be praying for your church community as you all find your way through the division.

      Reply
  3. Frank

    Dear Marcia,

    I read both of your blogs about “Calling Audibles.” You are not only on target, you have hit the bullseye. Who and what can one believe anymore? As you point out so well we lack the integrity and transparency that our “ME” culture proclaims to advocate. You and John have my respect and appreciation for all that you have done for me and others by your teaching and your witness. I know that you are “forgetting the past and looking forward to what is ahead.”

    Your blog on “Digging, Dying, Dancing” is powerful.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Dear Frank,
      Thank you for being a part of this conversation. Your affirmations mean a great deal to me and to John. I know you understand what it means to keep moving in hope even when you have a lot to grieve. You are a blessing! Hope you keep reading.

      Reply
  4. Ann Carr

    Marcia – I would love for transparency to be the new defining concept for the 21st century – in churches, in politics, in sports – everywhere. I feel that integrity has lost its meaning. Tthe word is a big “buzz” and keeps being used, but there seems (to me) to be very little proof that it actually matters. Thank you, as always, for your thoughtful and clearly reasoned writing on this and I look forward to more.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, Ann Carr, for your comments and insights. I, too, pray that we are entering a new era of transparency. I hope you’ll keep reading and adding your wisdom to the conversation.

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  5. Don

    Marcia, as a former college football coach I can understand many of your emotions. I have been conflicted often in trying to determine the meaning and value of “Integrity.” The mess of these past two football seasons has tried many of us to make sense of the word. I cannot imagine what you and your family have been through.

    I have had the good fortune to parent three wonderful children. My oldest son was fortunate enough to be coached by your husband. Midway through his first season under John’s tutelage, he converyed to me that he wanted to become the kind of man that John is. As his father, I have to admit to being a tad jealous. As a friend of your husband, I am honored to have had my son come under his positive influence and guidance. He has been unwavering in his commitment to doing things the right way.

    Integrity and transparency are certainly alive and well in your home.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Dear Don,
      Thank you for reading and for your affirmations of the work John does. That means the world to both of us. What a privilege to coach your son and to know your family. You all are a shining example of what’s right in football. Here’s hoping and praying that integrity and transparency can find a new kind of traction in this business. I hope you’ll keep reading and adding your valuable insights. All our best to you all!

      Reply
  6. Michol Beltran

    Reading this dialogue as my grandson contemplates joining a college program is very insightful. I would,love for him to play for a honorable coach as I see this role as a lifetime coach. Your writing is so insightul and frightening to read. The NCAA has always held great respect in my mind. Now I am fearful for my young grandson and the world he contemplates to join. But perhaps he will become a part of a solution. I pray this will come to pass. He is an amazing athlete but more importantly an amazing young man. I hope his future journey playing football in college will make a difference insomeone’s life. Certainly your writings and perspectives on dealing with truth and angry have given me insight. I thank you for your brave writings. You are so gifted. And yes the tragedies and sorrows in your life have woven great dialogues and gifts to the community. Thank you so much for your thoughts. I will continue to read your writings. As an old woman I believe I should have more wisdom. I have trully enjoyed and learned from your work. God bless you on your journey through life!

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