My son’s Redmond High School football team recently had its last game. Head coach Jason Rimkus invites the parents into the gym after home games to listen to what all the coaches have to say about the game. My husband and I had never attended these until the last game. What I saw really moved me and I understood a little more than the football game itself.
My son, Nikhil, would talk about brotherhood, leadership and being there for one another. I’d listen but quite honestly, didn’t put as much thought into it as maybe I should have.
After the last game, we went into the gym to see what it was all about. All the coaches stood before the players and told them how proud they were to have been their coach, to see them develop into these fine young men. Many of the coaches got teared up, especially Rimkus, who told them he loved them all and would be missing his senior players.
Some of the players got up to speak and tell how they felt about their teammates. What followed is what got me in the heart. These boys all got up and started hugging one another. They’d go to each player, each coach, hug them and thank them…. some with tears in their eyes. I, too, had tears flowing down my face.
I finally saw the brotherhood my son was talking about. I understood that football is not just a sport but a bonding experience where our boys learn commitment, compassion, leadership, competition and more importantly, brotherhood. They went into the season as a team and they exited as a family. I could not be more proud of my son, his teammates, his coaches and his school.