Excellence – the definition of excellence is a talent or quality that is so good that it surpasses ordinary standards. It’s not about how many wins or loses your team accumulates throughout the season. However, it’s about what your team does that other teams don’t that separate you from the rest.
Being excellent and building a culture doesn’t happen overnight. It’s about the work you put in behind the scenes. Vince Lombardi once said “The man on top of the mountain didn’t just fall there”. It’s about the small battles that get you to the top of that mountain.
I am sure all of you enjoyed watching the Super Bowl and watching the Philadelphia Eagles hoist up the Lombardi Trophy in the air. One play that stuck out to me above the rest – was with 2 minutes and 16 seconds left in the game, Brandon Graham made the play that turned the game around. All game long, the Eagles Defense tried and tried again to get back there and sack Tom Brady. They came up so close and fell short every time – until it mattered most. On that play, Brandon Graham made the play that won the Eagles that game. With a strip sack and an Eagles recovery, it set them up for another score to put them up by 8.
The message that I was trying to get across, is that no matter how many times you try and try and don’t succeed, don’t dwell upon those moments. Try again, and you will succeed.
2 seasons ago, we played Centenary and lost 22-2. My freshman class, the remaining players from the previous seasons – and most importantly the coaches all had the mindset that in order to be excellent and build something that hasn’t been done here we need to first do the little things right – being excellent and doing your job will ultimately lead our team to success, and lead our team on top of the mountain. Throughout the year, meeting with our chaplain and coaches we came up with the theme “Plus One”. So, on the Men’s Lacrosse Team, every bench, squat, ground ball, and sprint we gave a plus one mentality towards. We strive to keep pushing through the tough times in order to become Excellent! We beat Centenary 11-9 last year.
Treat every opportunity like its 4th and 1. Have fun with it.