There is no other explanation than the title of this blog.
As a sports fan, I am completely disheartened at the recent news of the PED scandal in baseball as well as the controversy surrounding Johnny Manziel.
I love sports. When we had cable, I would make a point to get up every morning in time to watch Mike and Mike on ESPN. I grew up watching football on Sunday afternoons and learned to love the game so much that my dear husband is the “football widower” in our house. He loves to watch a football game, but doesn’t plan his Saturday and Sunday afternoons around what time the games come on like I do. I played volleyball, basketball and softball in high school. I was an average player, not recruited to College to play. I was ok with that – I played because I LOVED to play.
As an adult, I played in the local softball league. I know how to play tennis, can hit a golf ball ( although there is NO TELLING where it will go). I can swim and love riding my bike. Oh – lets digress on that for a moment – because I grew up watching the Tour de France. Watching Greg Lemonde. Remember him?
Then came Lance Armstrong. His backstory was fascinating and every year, for seven years he won that grueling race in the mountains and flatlands of France. Now, I am not so naive to think that the use of PED’s isn’t happening in every sport, all the time. However, I was one who didn’t believe it at first, didn’t believe that the reason Lance won SO many races was because he used PED’s. I wanted to believe it was because he basically rebuilt his body after defeating cancer and he worked really, really hard to train and then beat out the competition. I wanted to believe that Lance was really a nice guy – after all, he started a foundation to help others! Why would he possibly be involved in anything illegal to win those races. I really, really wanted to believe.
It was SO disheartening to me to find out the truth. To watch the Oprah interview. To know that not only did he use PED, but then he tried to cover it up. He made the lives of people in his circle miserable. I was so sad to learn that the greatest achievement ever in the sport of cycling was all a lie and a scam.
I have no explanation for his actions other than, for the love of money. I seriously doubt that he would have continued his use of PED if the money was not dangling out there in front of him. More wins = more money. Win at all costs, no matter what, Just win and you’ll get more sponsorships, more notoriety, more money. Win. Win. Win. Love of money.
The recent news about the use of PED in baseball has me equally disheartened. I love baseball and yes, I am a Yankees fan. No, I do not like A-Rod. Never have, never will. There was always “something” about his character that didn’t sit right with me.
I HATE the fact that long standing records in baseball were broken by people who cheated. That is not playing for the love of baseball, that is playing for the love of money, the love of fame and the love of notoriety. Oh hooray you broke a record but you CHEATED to do it. Shame shame shame.
Towards the end of every summer I COUNT the days until football season starts. I was living in Charlotte when the Carolina Panthers franchise was created so that’s my pro team. I am part Irish and Catholic so of course I also love Notre Dame football. (Sidenote: When our boys were born, I chose an Irish name for our first boy and our second child has the Initials N.D. because we couldn’t decide on another Irish name for him). Again, I am SURE there is PED use in football and I know that things go on to make these men bigger, faster, stronger. As a football fan, I am saddened by the path that Johnny Manziel is on. SUCH a talent that is seemingly being wasted for – the love of money. Granted, I am not a big Johnny Football fan, especially since he beat out Manti Teo of ND for the Heisman, BUT as a fan of the game, I pray that somebody, somewhere with the knowledge to help him straighten out his life does just that.
I wonder if I were to interview these people with their multi-million dollar contracts/income/potential and ask them if it was worth it, what their answer would be?
Was the love of money worth the cheating? Was it worth getting caught and now having your name forever associated with scandal?
If it wasn’t for the love of money, WHY did you do it?
It surely wasn’t for the love of the game or sport.
Part of loving the game is holding true to the standards of the game.
Honesty, integrity, skill, knowledge, work ethic, passion.
Those are skills that money can’t buy. Those are the skills athletes should love.
Learn to love the GAME more than loving the money.