football is not just a game, and it's more than a way of life. It all starts with an imaginary line, a line that doesn't exist anywhere else but in the minds and hearts of all those who choose to believe: the players, the coaches, the fans, and sportswriters. it's a line that can't be found in books or in space, but only in the hearts of children, and the man they become. But why?
football is no more than one man trying to carry a leather ball across the imaginary line, and another doing his best to stop him. The reason is simple, yet so complex that it could hardly be explained. You see, the imaginary line begins as a telephone pole in some places, or a fire hydrant in others. It could be the big tree over there, or the stone at the end of an open field. It all begins the first time a child takes a football in his hands and crosses this imaginary line, or the first time another child stops someone from doing so. the experience is not unlike that of being able to fly like a bird, you know, like in dreams, sometimes when you can soar endlessly through the skies without a care in the world below. then it all begins, the child continues to strive and sacrifice just to pass this line again. Others continue to try to stop him. Both, try to recapture that feeling that only one who believes in the imaginary line can understand. That feeling that captures the dreams of childhood, and transforms grown men back into children to relive the original glory, even if just for a moment of time.
Some say football is a violent sport, but the truth is, it is a sport that for many years has kept some from violence. it is more than a sport, it is a way to teach men to be leaders, to destroy racism, and to teach others just how important we are to one another. It teaches teachers to never give up on a child, and the soldier to fight with courage. It feeds families and creates jobs that would not exist without the game. It teaches all those who it touches to never give up, and when things look bleak in life, it teaches one who has been knocked down, that victory can be one choice away. It teaches those who fail and fall to get up, and continue for as long as it takes. it creates great and wise managers for our businesses, and doctors who will not give up on a patient, despite the odds. football is a game that reflects life in its purest form, and has continued to grow and change to reflect the goals of the American society in which it flourishes. football is a game that builds the work ethic that sustains so greater society, and teaches that sometimes change is a good thing. It dispels fears, and fosters competition among brothers, whose bond is always solidified by the fact that when the contest is over, together, they still believe in that imaginary line.
I feel sorry for those who never entered the gridiron classroom, or for the educator who just doesn't agree with football being part of the education system throughout this great nation. You see, the reason they feel the way they do, is because they never crossed the imaginary line; in fact, they never believed in it. What they need to learn is that football is not just another sport created by Americans for pleasure, but a sport created because of Americans for pleasure. Football is not just a way of life, It is our way of life. It is the life of those who call on a mighty God, when the going gets tough, and who shakes hands after a contest well played. sometimes I wonder if football is just part of life, or is life just part of football. I don't know, but I do know this; our future is assured because somewhere while I am writing this, some young man may have just crossed that imaginary line for the very first time, and another believer has been made.