Friday, November 3, 2017

What is sportsmanship, really?

Atlee High School in Mechanicsville, Virginia, has a football player with cerebral palsy. His name is Sepp Shirley, and he has trouble walking without crutches, but he loves football and has been on the Atlee team for several years. Last month, Atlee was playing Varina High School from Henrico, Virginia, and Sepp wanted to play, so his coach put him in as a running back. Sepp (and his Dad) made sure the other team knew that they COULD tackle him.

But when the quarterback handed Sepp the ball, the players from Varina did not tackle him. Instead they joined his teammates and cheered him on as he ran an incredible 80 yards down the field without crutches and scored a touchdown. Afterward, Varina's coach said, "The definition of physical and mental toughness is Sepp marching 80 yards. It's the toughest 80-yard run I've ever witnessed." Atlee lost the game 21-63, but does that really matter?

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