Remedial Christianity

THE BRAINWASHING OF ISAAC SHAH

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So this week Isaac got his first taste of Ohio State Football Camp.  As I have mentioned in previous posts, he has played football for the last two years, and it is his favorite sport of all-time.  I have been trying to lobby him towards basketball, but he is standing firm.  He knows he is not a star but he still wants to play football.  The last time I mentioned the slim possibilities of ever playing in college or the pros, he turned serious and said, “Dad, you have to let your kids dream!”

And so here we are at camp.  Dreaming.

He has joined 500+ other 5th-8th graders for three days of football instruction, fun and systematic brainwashing. What do I mean by that?  Well, when we first arrived here in Columbus, Isaac was truly conflicted about his identity.  Was he a Wolverine or Buckeye?

conflicted isaac

Those questions are gone.  By the end of this camp I’m pretty sure he will have completely forgotten that he was born at the University of Michigan hospital.

The camp is held at the OSU football complex.  It’s pretty impressive.  After registration the kids were assigned teams, each “coached” by a current OSU player.  Isaac has coach Josh Perry (might start at linebacker this year).  Then they each had a picture taken with Urban Meyer, along with an inspirational speech.

IMG_3140IMG_3144

Then began 3 days of activities all oriented around giving the kids the ultimate OSU experience.  They had drills with OSU football players.  My son caught a ball from Cardale Jones and got instruction from Warren Ball. Inspirational speeches from coaches and former players…..assorted messages from “Start each day with a win, make your own bed!” to “Separate in order to elevate!”

ENDLESS chanting of O-H-I-O & Go Bucks!  All washed in a sea of scarlet and gray.

Today it ends with them watching a highlight video in Ohio Stadium and then getting to play “Buckeye Ball” on the field.

I have to admit, it has been fun to watch Isaac run around and play some football.  He is not that big and not that fast, and honestly there have been moments that confirmed my biggest fears about his football career.  Namely, that he is going to be destroyed by large children.

Look at this kid….he was in front of us at the registration line.  At first I thought he was a parent. He was my height (6’0″) and I’m guessing in the ballpark of 220-230 lbs.  AND HE JUST FINISHED 6TH GRADE!!! (by comparison, Isaac just finished the 4th grade, but the look on Isaac’s face says it all)

isaac and large kid
But when Isaac got to his team (all his age) he seemed to fit in.  So that was encouraging.  And he wasn’t quite the slowest kid out there.  Look at him torching these kids….

{Ok, so maybe he got matched up with some slow ones, but he had his moments}

It is kind of funny because I am a Wolverine who is literally watching them groom the next generation of football fanatics here at OSU.  Including my son.  And I don’t really mind.

Because Isaac is LOVING every minute of it.

As I watch him run around I realize that there he probably has very little future in this sport.  He is (Lord willing) going to be a doctor someday or a circus clown or a pastor….but this week he is having fun.  He is being a kid.  He is making memories that he will have for the rest of his life.

And that’s good enough for me.

Now I have to go…..he’s due to play his game in Ohio Stadium any minute now….

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