THE COLT MCCOY STORY
College football experienced a masterpiece national championship game featuring the number one ranked Crimson Tide from Alabama against the undefeated ballers from the University of Texas. The Longhorns, led by their Heisman nominated quarterback Colt McCoy hoped to prove to the world that you...well...you don't mess with Texas.
But in front of a sellout crowd in Pasedena and millions more watching on television around the world, McCoy's dream turned into a nightmare. On the 5th play of the game, the gunslinger dropped back to make a throw when he was subsequently nailed by the hungry 'Bama linebacker Marcell Dareus. McCoy, who had been hit thousands of times before, knew something was different this time. And when he went to hoist his rifle arm up into a throwing position, his long cannon felt more like a soft, wet noodle.
As the Lone Star State went into tears of disbelief, medics and doctors went to work on the young man's arm with the same amount of vigilance horse trainers use when examining a tight tendon of a racehorse at the Breeder's Cup. The results remained negative. Diagnosis after diagnosis, stretch after stretch, all met with same excruciating answer: The boy could not play.
This is when the frustrated superstar demands one more shot, one more hope of re-entering the Rose Bowl in hopes of engineering a victory. "Give me a ball," he demanded. Colt's own father, the same man who had been there at his birth, raised him through childhood, coached him through high school, and raised him to become a warrior, now stood just 7 feet away from McCoy's ferocious spirit and lifeless arm.
McCoy raised the ball like he had done a million times in the backyard growing up, geared back his shoulder, and tossed a ball that putted the ground half way to his father. Colt gripped the ball a second time thinking to himself, "It's just a basic throw, throw it." He did. The ball rolled a few feet. Finally a third time, with his face tightened and teeth gripping down on his mouthpiece, Colt threw with everything he had, but the ball just dropped. It fell in the same way a boxing manager throws in the towel during a vicious fight to protect his fighter. McCoy, a quarterback that could throw the football 70 yards on the money, couldn't even through it 7.
Colt McCoy's injury would have allowed him to play any other position on the field that night. Free safety, linebacker, running back, even kicker. But in his still quiet moment of destination, the position he had trained to play for ages was absolutely not possible. And through all the hurt, pain, and turmoil, his father was there.
God is our father. And the Bible clearly states in Deuteronomy 31 for us to "be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified...for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." For those that believe in Him, for those who have given their life to Him, to those who are fully devoted to Him, He will leave us or abandon us. He will never forsake us. In the moments of our crises, whether it is griping a football or griping the lifeless body of a perished child, God will be there. Please put your faith in him today. Amen.
(From a sermon by Tom Papez, Chariots of Fire, 6/23/2010)
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