Kevin Sumthin shifted to the left as soon as he read the QB’s eyes. He sensed the strong tackle’s frustration as he did, and could have sworn he heard a huff across the three to five yards separating them which was audible even over the strong count. A split second later the Center convulses and the ball is in play.
Just as anticipated the QB feigns to turn and slide into the developing pocket, yet instead drops his shoulder and lowers his arm in effort to drive the ball into the Tail Backs clutches. It was a bit of a rookie mistake for a senior squad leader to make, especially when there is a highly recruited four star ILB named Kevin Sumthin two jerseys separated from the action.
Now there were scouts at this game. Most of them arrived as a collection and in celebration of a closing years efforts. The geography was right for the meet. There isn’t a lot more to be extrapolated from game observation. The evaluations were mostly complete except for some laboratory work that will come later. The grades had been evaluated. They’d filtered through their targets social media and talked to teachers and parents. Kevin’s team had already sealed up an appearance at his State’s shaker, and his coaches weren’t keen on risking injury to players that were expected to carry them at least two rounds in before their first true test. This would be the only drive Kevin would appear in, and the offense he faced was playing a third and twelve after two failed passing attempts, as if just going through the motions themselves.
The TB who just took possession of the rock was a senior who had only been playing since his junior year. He had a rude talent. He even had some speed to share, yet nobody knew his name. When he took the rock that evening and in that moment, just as Kevin, he was also playing two seconds ahead of everyone else. By the time he had full control he had a plan- as the huffing tackle tried to counter Kevin’s shift, the TB already knew he was beat. By the time the first step of no return was planted by the big man opposite Kevin, the TB knew his only escape would be picking up the pieces and making a dash for the TE holding the end of the strong side. He anticipated this as soon as he saw Kevin shift.
And that’s how it happened. The TB jams his cleat in the terra an cuts hard left and leaves a trail of bewilderment for precisely two full blast steps before he jams his opposite foot this time and does something unexpected. He cut back into the foray- why? Because he knew his trap was set and based on overreaction of the four star LB everyone was jabbing on about. Kevin picked a bad line and overshoots the TB, which the TB anticipated because he knew this guy- through film, yes, and he was savvy no doubt… It’s not that Kevin did anything wrong, it’s that the TB was smarter. A window opens. A zig, a zag, and daylight- time to hit the burners. And there went thirty yards. He stepped out of bounds instead of introducing himself to a safety and a corner who happened to be in the region by virtue of coverage. If he hadn’t stepped out? We’d likely know his name today.
As it is, there was a flag on the ground back near the LoS. It seems a frustrated Tackle decided to latch onto Kevin as he closed- as if he had a prayer of slowing that freight train. The play is called back, and after one failed passing attempt, the punt is blocked by none other than our star linebacker. Whatever was gleaned from the prior play, it was lost in the jubilation of the home team and the ‘recently’ reassured scouts half observing from the sidelines. Kevin was a stud, and though that TB momentarily flashed some moxy, surely he couldn’t have done that without Mr. Frustrated Tackle holding, right? Not right. It was a bad call. There was no holding.
The TB knew this without having to review the play on film, a practice he’d made habit and disciplined himself to do every Saturday morning. The timing wasn’t right if he’d, in fact, been held. That moment was his moment. Maybe nobody else on the planet knew it but he and Kevin, and the TB’s coach’s had already lost interest in the class so they were not interested in mentioning it- the TB beat the famed ILB badly. That evening, a TB’s two years of perfecting his craft was evaluated in the 9 seconds of game time it took for all of this to transpire, and nobody remembers.
Not all is lost.
In the years that passed, the TB realized his efforts in life won’t always be celebrated. He had presented to him, that night, a trophy that served him better than any other that was collecting dust in the attic, or worse. He realized that precisely defined moments in time when everything comes to clarity and all the hours and days of work will exhaust themselves in a single exposure. The TB’s exposure was precisely nine seconds of game. In his mind, the effort leading to those nine seconds was worth it. He applied, in his largely successful endeavors, the same principles and it served him well.
He still doesn’t bother explaining this to people, as it sounds absurd. They’re impressed enough when he reluctantly admits he played against Kevin Sumthin, who was an All-American on the third ranked and Rose Bowl Champion Team, and later seen riding on the trunk of a classic Cadillac with bands all around him as a home town hero turned pro-bowler. That TB knew he beat him that night. Furthermore, he knew there was a time he could do it regularly, if only he knew how to get the attention of those high-affluent coaches.
He still wonder’s “what if”, and who wouldn’t?
CFB51 is joining with forces that are well aware of circumstances like described above. It’s a new day, hopefully, for student athletes who have been overlooked by the services or who are working hard at recovering from stupidity that often accompanies the cocktail of youth and competitive drive. Hey- it’s all good. We’ve all been there.
Many of us have been there, but many of us didn’t have the opportunity to recover. Or, we’ve been overlooked because we grew up and played in B.F. Egypt where scouts rarely tread. What CFB51 is offering you, if this profile fits, is an opportunity to shout your game- and for it to be seen. Not only should you load up a profile and describe yourself, you should also utilize the community of CFB51 to help you evaluate yourself. There are a ton of social media pitfalls- but what of a place where you can discuss, in depth, your understanding of the game and your vision of purpose playing? I’m thinking, and this is just me, you, but I’m thinking that would go down like a sweating glass of lemonade in mid August three-a-days for a current HC of a nationally recognized team to swallow while filling out his roster, no?
Can I make a suggestion? Use the service. It’s free. It’s dynamic and it’s engaged. You wouldn’t believe the eyes that see it- and how you present yourself is how you want to present yourself.
Check out the “Missing Stars” Prospect Player Locator and fill out a profile using the sample to guide you.
Discussion’s, as always, are in the Forum’s Publisher Board.