Thursday, July 28, 2011

Answering the Knock of Opportunity

I have been a bit under the weather the past couple of weeks. Apparently what the somewhat rounded medical minds at McMedicine diagnosed as "poison ivy" a couple of Fridays ago was not. While I was holding out hope that it was sumac - if for no reason other than it never is - form held for me as well. It was not. Well, at least according to the most recent diagnosis, which the Missus and I received at the Emergency Room at Somerset Medical Center early Sunday morning. We shall see.

Blame it on my own general feeling of "blah". Blame it on the weather. Blame it on whatever you wish. Or perhaps give credit to it. It is a matter of perspective I suppose. However you look at it, my little brain awoke on the distracted side of the bed this morning. Thus, today's insanity shall be delivered in an abbreviated fashion.

Slightly less than one year ago, I used this space to write about Boston College linebacker Mark Herzlich and his comeback on the collegiate gridiron from Ewing's sarcoma, an opponent hell bent on ending far more than simply his career. Herzlich played his senior year at BC without sustaining an injury. More importantly, it appears as if he has placed his cancer squarely in the rear-riew mirror.

A young man well-versed in dealing with adversity was served another helping of it in late April when he was among the collegiate football players who went unselected at the NFL Draft. Did not getting drafted bother him - a kid who prior to his cancer diagnosis had been projected to be a first or second-round draft pick? Of course. But he dealt with it. It is after all what he does. Better stated, it is in his DNA.

On Tuesday, Herzlich received his invitation to compete for a spot in the NFL. The Giants signed him to a free-agent contract. What is he guaranteed? Nothing other than an opportunity. He shall have to fight hard to make it in the NFL. There is no guarantee that he shall....

....but I am not inclined to bet against him. One does so at one's own peril.


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