It's called the college life and it's where you can learn some tough and valuable lessons about truth and consequences. It's where you wait for the NBA draft and they tell you the truth about you, and you're faced with the challenge of accepting it and using it to your benefit.
This is the lesson Yancy Gates learned last week and hopefully every other University of Cincinnati athlete who has a desire to compete at the next level of sports. You won't accidentally make it to the pros. You won't stumble into a job; you won't even get there because you have a logo that people love on your jersey. You will only get there by what you have done and how long you have done it. According to reports Yancy knew he wasn't going to get drafted last Thursday in part because there were some concerns about his weight and the ability to keep it down. Others were reportedly concerned about his worth ethic with respect to its consistency. Either way Yancy had a chance, and has a chance to prove the doubters wrong.
This is that life lesson where the hangers on can't help, your parents can't help and your alma mater can't help. It's your call; your decision and your question to answer: how bad do you want it? If this is what you really want, how much are you going to commit to achieve it? LeBron James said he looked in the mirror and took self inventory of King James and his honesty revealed he didn't do all that he could have to help his team win. That was the first growth spurt but the second one and the most important one was what he did about it. He trained harder, talked to people like Oscar Robertson for wisdom and insight and committed fully to doing everything he possibly could to achieve the desired results.
This is the point where Yancy stands in his life and his basketball career; it's his decision, his commitment and his plan that will guide where he lands. I believe this wake up call will give him the fuel he needs to reach his dream and achieve that which he says he desires. We can watch, wait and even cheer but the results will speak for themselves. They always do...
Here's wishing him all the best; and that his life lesson is transferrable to every player who dreams of making it to the top. Rest assured the pros are watching you as much as you're watching them. The question is what will they see when they look at you?
That's the way I see it, sitting in The Box Seat