By Ken Reed
The Nick Foles story — castoff QB becomes Super Bowl MVP — is a good one based solely on what he accomplished on the field.
But it’s the perspective he brought to the big game that really sets him apart and makes him an outstanding role model for athletes — young and old alike.
Here’s Foles talking about how he approached the biggest game of his life:
“Going into this game I sort of went back to when I played basketball. I didn’t really worry about the score, I didn’t worry about the clock, I just played. I just played and I wasn’t gonna worry about it.”
Foles also talked about the importance of teamwork and how trusting his teammates and coaches helped him remain calm:
“The big thing that helped me was knowing that I didn’t have to go out and be Superman … I felt calm. We have such a great group of guys. Such a great coaching staff. We felt confident coming in and we just went out there and played football.”
But Foles was at his best when he talked about how he overcame failure earlier in his career to reach the ultimate in football: quarterback of the Super Bowl champions and Super Bowl MVP:
“I think the big thing is don’t be afraid to fail. I think in our society today — Instagram and Twitter — it’s a highlight reel. It’s all the good things, and then when you look at it, you think like, ‘Wow.’ When you have a rough day or your life’s not as good as that, you’re failing. Failure’s a part of life. That’s a part of building character and growing. Like without failure, who would you be?
“I wouldn’t be up here if I hadn’t fallen thousands of times, made mistakes. We all are human. We all have weaknesses. And I think throughout this, just being able to share that and be transparent, I know when I listen to people speak and they share their weaknesses, I’m listening, because I can resonate. So I’m not perfect. I’m not Superman. I might be in the NFL, and we might’ve just won the Super Bowl, but hey, we still have daily struggles. I still have daily struggles. But that’s where my faith comes in; that’s where my family comes in. And I think when you look at a struggle in your life, just know that that’s just an opportunity for your character to grow.”
Now that’s a championship perspective.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #26 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Fix Youth Sports? – John O’Sullivan is Founder and CEO of Changing the Game Project and author of “Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes and Giving Youth Sports Back to Our Kids.” We discuss overzealous adults in youth sports, the dangers of sport specialization, youth sports entrepreneurs and the profit-at-all-costs mindset, and the growing socio-economic gap in youth sports.
Follow on Facebook: @SportsForumPodcast
Episode #25 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Physical Education Should Be a Critical Component of K-12 School Design – Michael Horn is co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation.
Episode #24 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Mental Health and Athletes: Ending the Stigma – Nathan Braaten and Taylor Ricci are the founders of Dam Worth It, a non-profit created to end the stigma around mental health at colleges and universities through sport, storytelling, and community creation.
Episode #23 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Olympian Benita Fitzgerald Mosley Talks Title IX, Youth Sports and the Olympics.
Episode #22 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Rethinking Sports Fandom with Author Craig Calcaterra – We discuss Calcaterra’s new book “Rethinking Fandom: How to Beat the Sports-Industrial Complex at Its Own Game” and explore new ways to be a fan.
Episode #21 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Chatting About a Broken Game With Baseball Writer Pedro Moura – Moura is a national baseball writer for Fox Sports. We discuss how and why the game of baseball is broken, what factors caused it, and offer a few thoughts on how to “fix” a great game.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
- League of Fans Sports Policy Director Ken Reed quoted in Washington Post column titled "What happened to P.E.? It’s losing ground in our push for academic improvement," by Jay Mathews
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
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