Super Bowl offers life lesson: never give up

They’re words we’ve all heard before, but effort pays off.

Like most of the country, I was in front of the television Sunday watching the Super Bowl. I’ll have to admit, I was probably leaning in support of Atlanta, only because they weren’t supposed to win.
    Despite all the predictions they could not beat the Patriots, the Falcons certainly were on track to do it after taking a 25-point lead, but what happened after that can teach us all a lesson that never say never and persistence breed success.
    Atlanta held a 28-3 third quarter lead, but the unlikely happened. Everything went the Patriots’ way and New England made history in so many areas, winning the game on some unbelievable plays in the first Super Bowl overtime, 34-28.
    New England never led in the game. The only time they did followed the go-ahead two-yard run by James White after the Patriots marched down the field, getting the ball first in the overtime period.
    Heading into the halftime break, it would have been easy for the Patriots to hang their heads and give up. That’s a lesson to us all, young and old alike, when confronted with tough roads in front of us. Of course, NFL players, especially in the Super Bowl, have big financial reasons for winning, let alone the prestige that follows.
    While not taking away anything from their efforts, to me, a win like our high school girls’ basketball team brought home from Wray, Colo., last week is something to be admired, too. They were down 13 points late in the game to a state-ranked team and had never led in that game, yet Chase County pulled out a one-point victory on a last second basket. That’s because they never gave up.
    Or what about striving for that 100th win in high school wrestling, which has been achieved by two Longhorn wrestlers this season? They set goals and never gave up.
    And, how about last year’s state high school track championship by our girls’ team, winning by just half a point when the opening day performances made a state title look a little bleak? Likewise, they never gave up as a team.
    There are also many, many students who excel everyday in the classroom, who don’t get the publicity despite overcoming challenges to stay at the top of their class academically.
    These youths have no big financial incentives, no rings they’re playing for, no parades when they ace a difficult test. Yet the hard work they put forth should be no less gratifying to them, and acknowledged by the rest of us. It’s not on the big stage like the Super Bowl, but that effort to overcome the odds, whether in the gym or in the classroom, must be admired and will bring benefits later.
     Competition on the field or the classroom is a good thing; it’s super, it makes us better and it should be encouraged.

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