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Linton-Stockton Miners teaching lessonsPosted Thursday, November 12, 2009, at 7:29 PM
Don't take anything for granted or for certain is the message to be learned from the Linton-Stockton Miners football team.
Going into last week's sectional final game against North Daviess the Miners were dubbed as underdogs.
They had dropped the previous meeting in the regular season, had struggled to score points in that contest and were -- in some people's minds -- staring at the end of the season.
But low and behold, the Miners turned things around on the Cougars and are now sporting their third sectional trophy in succession and are deciding how they can stop a very strong and very impressive Fountain Central squad this Friday night.
It seemed like a case of Deja Vu all over again as Yogi Berra would say.
The week before they had entered the contest against North Knox as an underdog to a team that had beaten them in the regular season.
But once again the spirit and determination of a bunch of kids who don't pay attention to who is the underdog and who is the favorite rose above all else.
Many times we as fans, sports writers and interested bystanders take too many things into account. We have a tendency to over simplify or over complicate issues.
I for one am guilty of this act. If you've read any of the previews of games that I've written you'll detect a trend to break things down to numbers and history -- a technique used by not only me, but by many of my colleagues.
And why is that? You may or may not ask. It's because the fans want to know all of these things. Not for use in figuring the tendency of an opposing offense or to judge who is the strongest player defensively on a given opponent.
But rather for our own esoteric purposes.
We as fans like to think that we can predict within certain perameters and with a certain amount of confidence, the outcome of any given game on any given night.
We like to think that we are some kind of authority on our favorite team or favorite players. And we have strong tendency to believe that we are right about these beliefs, even when faced with the facts that may not be in our favorite.
But in reality we are doing nothing more than soothing our egos and filling our own minds with the expectations that we have.
Instead we should be looking and watching how the young men and women who play the games we watch take everything into consideration.
They don't lineup across from an opponent with the belief they have absolutely no chance for success in most cases.
Instead they face that opponent with the same belief and determination as the opponent carries -- that they will give their best effort and ultimately come out ahead.
Perhaps we as fans should let this show of belief and determination be enough to console us when our team loses and be a source of pride win or lose.
Afterall, it is just a game.
Rick Curl is a sports writer at the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached at (812) 847-4487, ext 20 or at r
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