What is it really about?
I had the privilege of officiating a dual meet between Mac Williams and Grays Creek middle schools in Cumberland County. There were four preliminary bouts all but one held to the customary 1 minute periods. One prelim was wrestled with 30 second periods. This was to allow a disadvantaged wrestler the opportunity to compete. This Grays Creek wrestler was very excited to take the mat, his opponent did not appear to be as enthused. The match went three periods with the Grays Creek competitor scoring all the offensive points. Ankle bands were taken off, and the hand was raised in victory. A truly heart felt "YES!" could be heard as the wrestlers went to shake the coaches' hands.
I missed an opportunity yesterday, one that I hope I have the opportunity to not miss again. I wish I had stopped the Mac Williams wrestler as he left the mat, shook his hand one more time and said, "Smile. You should be proud of what you just did. Because what you just did makes you a winner off the mat and on the mat. And ultimately, we want our young people to wrestle so they can be great human beings off the mat."
I have had the honor of meeting many great humans in my forty-eight years on this planet. Yesterday, I met one more.