Offside Penalty

Several years ago I was broadcasting a girl’s basketball game on the radio. One of the girl’s names on our opponent’s team was familiar to me. I asked my broadcast partner, “You don’t suppose this is Ted’s daughter, that guy we used to play football against?”

I then asked my partner if he remembered this one particular play from that game thirty years before? My partner said he didn’t remember any particular play. So I said the two middle linebackers on that team were big guys. One was 6’1” and 235 and the other was 6’3” and 235. The bigger one kept trying to time the snap count and go between the guard and center gap on most every play.

On one particular play the linebacker went back about 7 or 8 yards to get a running head start to go along with his snap count guess. The quarterback realized what the linebacker was doing and didn’t give the final “hut” and just kept quiet. That big old linebacker just kept coming anyway and hit the center head on and with a forearm shiver stood the center straight up. He then pushed the center into the quarterback and wrapped both of them up in his arms. Then he drove them into the ground with the quarterback landing on his back, the center between them with the linebacker on top.

My broadcast partner starts laughing and said yes, he remembered that play. About 5 minutes later this big guy is standing in front of us as we are trying to call the ball game. He is yelling at me, “What are you saying about me on the radio?” I suddenly recognized him as I took off my headset and said, “Ted, I am Tim McGonagle.” Ted immediately smiles and says, “Hey man, how are you?” I asked my broadcast partner to take off his headset and give it to Ted and asked Ted to sit down and talk to me for a minute or two.

I quickly told him the story I just told on the air and he starts laughing. He said he remembered it just like I told it. I told him the next week at school when our coach showed us the film, he kept running the film back and forth, back and forth and we were all just laughing. Ted said the same thing happened at their school. So after a short visit we shook hands and he took off to finish watching his daughter play basketball.

At the end of your life, when you’re in that box, at your final party we call your funeral. You will only have three things left with you; your faith, your family and your friends. I pray that your life is abundant, with all three.