The holidays came early this year for local sports fans. The Rams shocked the world by trouncing the Seattle Seahawks by the unbelievable score of him 42-7. I was watching the game and I could not believe my eyes, and I was afraid that I would wake up and ﬁnd out that it was only a dream. However, it was all true and the Rams have returned to their original home, and to our hearts.
Next Sunday, the day before Christmas, they travel to Tennessee to play the Titans. This game is likely to be much tougher than the one that they just had. However, what we do know is that this is the beginning of a great team, possibly even a dynasty. Local fans are thrilled, because the returning Rams have exceeded all of their hopes, dreams and aspirations. Go Rams!
It was an absolute pleasure to see a thoughtful, mature Kobe Bryant and to hear his speech at the ceremony which retired numbers 8 and 24. Since his retirement, he has become a gentleman and a successful businessman. As a player, he was sometimes angry, childish, and rude. However, now it is abundantly clear that he has grown past those days. With his intelligence and drive, I think that we can expect great things from him in the future. Congratulations, Sir and maybe the force be with you in your future endeavors.
I think that is wonderful that today’s athletes like LeBron James, Seth Curry, Russell Wilson, and some others already involved in multi-million dollar businesses. The opportunities which exist for them today were mostly not available just 20 years ago. In addition many of the world’s best athletes did not have the education and the social skills that are necessary in the business world. It is sad to see some of our bygone sports heroes who were unable to overcome many challenges that they faced after their sports careers had ended. Many of them need employment, which they are unlikely to ﬁnd, and some of them are homeless. So, even our best young athletes need to get as much education as they can, because they are likely to need it.
Former USC football star Reggie Bush is retiring from the NFL. He gave us so many thrills. It ended badly for him at the school. I hope that he will now get his degree, which is required, if he wants to get into collegiate coaching, and very desirable, if he wants to get into broadcasting.
The NFL has announced that the Carolina Panthers must be sold to new owners. At the present time, approximately 75% of NFL players are African-American, and none of the owners are. This may be the last time in the next 20 years for African Americans to become majority owners of an NFL franchise. It won’t be easy, since in addition to having strong financial, management, and legal resources, they will have to put together about $2 billion in ﬁnancing.
Pursuing this opportunity ought to be a high priority, with those who are in a position to do so. If this opportunity is not developed, then it may take as long as 20 years before another one is available. Our business leaders must ﬁnd ways to collaborate so that African American ownership of an NFL franchise becomes a reality. This is old to the players, past and present, to the young people of today, and to those who are yet to be born.