Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Leading By Example

In college, I played basketball for The University of Toledo. When I was a freshman, I was much like a scared kitten. I tried to just stay out of every one's way. I didn't have a clue about much of anything, especially leadership.

UT has a freshman on their team this year who amazes me. Jake Barnett's playing ability is not the thing that impresses me (although he is very good). It is his leadership that I marvel at.

As this article in The Toledo Blade shares, Jake was named by his teammates as a captain of the team. The first time a freshman has held that mantle in school history.

"There was a respect factor there for us as a whole group that we have for Jake," junior forward Justin Anyijong said. "That's why we did that. We don't look at him as a freshman. We look at him as one of our leaders."

Jake is the first one in the gym before practice and the last one to leave. Now I found out that after games, he goes back out on the floor to work on his shooting. Amazing. After practice, I think I was the first one in the locker room!

I was talking with one of the assistant coaches at UT and he told me that from day one, Jake has been a leader. In fact, he said that he came in and organized a Bible study for the team and has changed the entire team atmosphere. That sort of thing from a freshman is unheard of. And, it's very cool!

It's clear that Jake Barnett is not only going to have an impact out on the floor during his career at UT, but also in the lives of many!

Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.
1 Timothy 4:12


Chris Cree said...

Sounds like he's an inspiration. Thanks for sharing his story with us, Jim. I think we all need to see these kinds of positive examples.

Marcus Goodyear said...

Very cool story. It reminds me in some ways of the leadership on the Spurs, initially led by David Robinson and picked up by others.

Jim Lange said...

Chris and Marcus, thanks for your comments. He does sound like an inspiration. I look forward to meeting him sometime in the future! Blessings to you both!