Sunday, October 22, 2006

Law School Draft Volume I

The great thing about college football is that it teaches important life lessons. The value of team work, how to deal with adversity and the importance of time management are only a few of the skill sets I developed over four years as a varsity letterman. Millions of sports fans watch Division I college football games and enjoy the artistry that is athletics. Some even spend time debating how easy and care free of a lifestyle college football players live. The common misconception is that athletes not only get a “free ride” but are undeservedly given preferential treatment. However I challenge that notion.

Success in collegiate sports can only come with commitment, dedication and personal sacrifice. My experience is that life does not offer anything worth having for “free”. It is true that I earned a full scholarship to attend Indiana University because of my ability to play football. It is also fair to say that I had the privilege of traveling all over the country to represent the university. I’d even agree that most 18-23 year olds would be lucky to see themselves on Sportscenter. However, I am most adamant about the fact that the harder I work the luckier I become.

While 99% of college students are asleep at 6:30 am, I am up lifting weights at the football facility. After an hour of weightlifting, I check in to a monitored breakfast to maintain my optimal weight, and then finally I’m off to an 8:00 am class. Team meetings start at 3:00 so I had to be sure to schedule classes that ended early enough for me to be on time (Good thing I served on the committee appointed by IU President Adam Herbert to implement priority registration for athletes). A couple of hours of football practice, and physical therapy to continue the rehabilitation of my knee conclude the day around 8:00 pm. Knee rehabilitation is one challenge I had to work through to continue playing football. Nine months of excruciating pain often made it impossible to sleep. I was willing to attack the pain to have an opportunity to play the game I loved, the game I refused to give up until my eligibility exhausted.

Most corporate executives don’t consistently work 6:30 am -8:00 pm, I did it at least three times a week including travel. The other days were a more reasonable ten hour commitment. I loved every moment of it, it was a great character building exercise. Living such a regimented lifestyle invokes a level of self-discipline that transcends beyond the playing field. I not only learned that commitment and passion are key drivers of success, but also to never mistake mere activity with achievement. There is direct application of this value system in every aspect of my life. I realize all things worth achieving require sacrifice. I now have a passion to learn, understand, and apply the law in my future career. While the task of law school is daunting, I am confident that my previous experiences have instilled the qualities needed to drive me to success. Thank you for your consideration as a candidate for admission to New York University Law School.


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