Athletic ability should not come before education

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Balance is the key with anything in life – eating, exercise, discipline, work, etc. Having balance is necessary to enjoy life.

Some schools, and many parents, have a problem balancing athletics and academics. I know some parents, especially fathers, who would prefer their child get a minimal

college athletic scholarship than

a four-year, fully paid academic


That’s not so with a mother I met this weekend at a baseball game. Her name was Sonya Favorite. When I asked her where she was from, she quickly said she was from South Vacherie. “It’s not ‘Back Vacherie’ as some people refer to it,” she said.

She was a very pleasant and pretty young lady who you could see had a personable interest in the game. I quickly found out her son was No. 7, and his name was Jordan. He played center field for St. Charles Catholic High School’s ninth-grade team. You didn’t have to be a professional baseball scout to realize that Jordan was gifted with above-average athletic ability, and I told her so.

In the course of our conversation, she shared, with humility but proud, that Jordan had graduated from St. Joan of Arc Elementary with a 3.5 grade point average.

Jordan had a great game that day.

I said to her, “I bet you make all

of his games.” “Yes, I do, and I will continue to do so as long as he does well in school.” She told me that

he understands the rules.” She continued, “I told him, ‘You can play any sport in school and I’ll make all of your games, as long as your grades come first. If not, you can stay home, look at “Lifetime” with me, and I’ll show you how to cut grass!’”

I enjoyed the game, but my conversation with Mrs. Favorite was most refreshing.

As I was leaving the ballpark, I ran into No. 7. I introduced myself and told him what his mother had said. He just smiled and agreed.

One day, Jordan will realize that God has blessed him with a very special gift – a wise mother.

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