Monday, December 01, 2008

And There Was Much Rejoicing…Again

I’m an old (and getting older!) Griffin grad, but is it really all that exciting to have a championship football team year after year after year? For the kids involved, sure, it’s their time and they have earned it. But somehow SHG’s awesomeness is getting a little redundant for me. I imagine most other schools can look back to a few very successful years and take pride, but when it’s almost every year for decades, a specialness deficit starts to pervade.

Some of my attitude here probably comes from how each SHG march to the state title indirectly, but inevitably, makes me revisit one of the more horrific memories I have of high school. It involves watching a friend of mine’s head being beat on my desk in class by a man who coached the Cyclones to second place in the state that same year. And nothing was done about it. It still makes me pretty angry. The 1970s: Life on Mars indeed. Maybe I’ll write more on that incident later. I just don’t want any repercussions now for telling the truth about what happened then.


Anonymous said...

Griffin has won just their 3rd state title. They have played in 7 state final games since the 70s. Last year they got knocked out in the first round.

Although they do well in their conference, they are now just beginning to put together an elite program. This was the first time that they beat a Joliet area team (Joliet Catholic, or Providence). They were 0-6 against those 2 teams over the years. So for them to win the state title this year while beating Providence in the process was very special.

I guarantee you that Coach Leonard cares about winning but he cares more about developing good citizens than he does football players. The dedication and discipline that he instills in these young men is incredible. Did you know that he has an hour a week set aside for character development for the football team. He brings in different speakers to talk about life.

No, Dave, I cannot get enough of this. I think it is awesome and frankly it has made the other teams around Springfield better too.

BlogFreeSpringfield said...

I have to say that I still take a lot of pride in seeing them win championships. And, I really like watching football being played well, and SHG plays it very well.

I've maintained a connection to the school, which probably is why I still take an interest. I've had nieces and nephews cycling through over the last ten years. We see some of the current players in church on Sunday. And my brother is good friends with Coach Leonard.

I can guess what coach you alluded to, and I agree there is no excuse for such abuse, but I can pretty much guarantee that Leonard would never do something like that, so I don't think it's fair to associate the current football program with that despicable event.

Dave said...

To be clear, I am in no way associating anyone connected with SHG today to what I witnessed 33 years ago, and the lack of response to it back then. The connection I make is also very involuntary and that is, literally, my problem. I was simply sharing something that continues to bother me to this day, and that it is often brought to my mind by SHG's winning ways.
It's weird, but there it is.

Again, I don't want any part of this post to be construed as being negative toward the current SHG coach or football team or anyone else involved in this weekend's deserved victory.